What if you fell in love… and then he disappeared?
When Noelle and Sam’s lives collide one snowy evening, they spend eight perfect hours stuck side by side believing that they’ll never see each other again.
But soon their lives become entangled in ways they never expected – and it’s going to change everything…
I came across Dear Emmie Blue by Lia Louis on NetGalley last year and it became not only one of my top reads from 2020 but also one of my favourite books ever. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve recommended it since then, to friends and to readers in various book groups.
Eight Perfect Hours is her hugely anticipated third novel. I waited three whole months for an ARC before the publishers (mercifully) approved me.
Noelle Butterby’s evening is nothing short of disastrous. Returning from her college reunion which didn’t quite go as expected, she now finds herself stranded on a snowy, traffic-jammed motorway with a dead phone, a broken heater and a shattered heart. In a desperate moment she decides to take up the American’s offer to let her charge her phone in his car. Eight perfect hours later, the night has taken a turn and she can’t bear to leave his company. But the motorway has opened up and Sam is on his way to the airport to fly home.
Two ships passing in the night, Sam and Noelle don’t expect to cross paths ever again but destiny has a few words to say about that.
Lia Louis spins absolute magic in her love stories. Reading this felt as if someone lit a tiny matchstick in my heart, bathed it in a soft glow, slowly warming it and lighting up the path to paradise. Sam and Noelle are bound by destiny and yet there is so much more to the story.
An invisible red thread connects those who are destined to meet, regardless of time, place and circumstance. The thread may stretch or tangle, But it will never break.
~ ancient Chinese proverb
Noelle has been struggling with the death of her dearest friend Daisy. Her mother, who had a stroke a few years ago, needs someone to look after her. Dilly, her brother, is away most of the time with his band, leaving Noelle to hold all the pieces together. She hasn’t had the time or space to follow her dreams and is nearly ready to give them up altogether.
Louis’s characters have this sincerity about them, a genuineness to their portrayal that makes you wish you could be included in their cosy circle and become lifelong friends. I do wish I could get to know Ian a little better. Noelle’s helpful neighbour and her mother’s friend is just the kind of man you’d want to swap stories of life experiences with over endless cups of coffee and moist cakes.
This is a captivating story about finding your one true love that can make the strongest non-believer change their mind. More importantly, and this is what truly makes this book so perfect, it convinces you to believe in your dreams, as crazy as they may seem, and rediscover your heart’s purpose.
I must say I was expecting an epilogue and it killed me not to skip ahead and read it. Then again, good things come to those who wait. Dear Emmie Blue taught me that 🙂
If you’ve read this author’s work before, I am certain you won’t be disappointed. And If you haven’t read her before, well, you’re in for an intoxicating ride for you’ll develop an addiction more powerful than anything you’ve ever consumed.
Book 39 of 2021.
Aquamarine Flavours Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟.
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