I have an exciting giveaway coming up on my Instagram this week for Sara Downing’s latest book (that comes out today!) called I Let You Fall. It’s a British story about a girl who finds herself in a coma and has an out-of-body experience while she tries to recover in the hospital. Sara is best known for her Head Over Heels series and though this standalone novel has a different feel, it has the heart and the style of a romantic comedy. Sara’s a great writer and I’m excited for someone in my community to be able to get a copy for free directly from the publisher, TCK Publishing, so keep an eye on my feed later this week for your chance to win!
On a summer night in London, art teacher Eve Chapman finds herself in a hospital emergency room. She watches surgeons desperately operate on a young woman with a terrible head injury. But when the bandages are removed, Eve is horrified to find her own body on the operating table.
Trapped in a coma, Eve struggles to cope with the fact that no matter how hard she tries, her family and friends cannot see or hear her. But then she meets Luca Diaz, a handsome and comatose lawyer who can see her. He takes Eve under his wing and teaches her how to use her new abilities to help the living.
As the weeks pass, Eve struggles to find a way back to her body and to Nathan, the man she loves. But the more time she spends with Luca, the more she wonders if her old life is worth going back to at all.
This story had such an interesting, deep (and potentially dark and intense) premise that I think I was expecting something I didn’t get. I went into it thinking there was going to be this life-affirming a-ha moment or maybe that this was going to be a light, cute rom-com kind of like Just Like Heaven with Reese Witherspoon—and it was neither of those things, but kind of tried to touch on both. I felt like we either needed to dig into the supernatural/spiritual connection a bit more and really pin down what was happening to Eve and Luca or we needed to experience a light, romantic love story. And though we got a bit of both, I felt it was lacking a little in both departments. It’s definitely intriguing to think about what happens to a person’s being (in the spiritual sense) while they’re in a coma and this was a comforting idea.
I generally liked the main character, Eve, though I found her to be a little naive about her relationship with Nathan. She seemed old enough and mature enough to not just have written off his indiscretions, but I guess that made her connection with Luca that much better. I wish we knew more about Luca and his background because I liked his personality that shone through, but I don’t really think we learned (or I retained) much about his life outside of the hospital. Maybe that was the point, but I think it was a missed opportunity. There were also some intersecting seemingly unrelated storylines that took a little while to get anywhere, but you really had to push through for the payoff (which was worth it, but you had to work to get there). It’s interesting because you knew so much more about the secondary characters—or at least felt like you did because you were getting glimpses into their day-to-day lives—that it felt a little uneven at times.
I really enjoyed Sara Downing’s writing style. Though the book started off a little slow and seemed on the long side, it was her writing that kept bringing me back. She does a very good job at creating a beautiful world and I’d be interested to take a peek at her other books to see if there are any stories that’d interest me. If you like the author, are at all interested in spirits or souls and what happens with them during trauma, or are looking for some comfort, you’ll like this.
If you’re interested in purchasing the book, click here.
“It’s just some cruel twist of fate that put us here, isn’t it? There’s no point sitting around, moping about it. We have to make the best of what’s been dealt us.” —Sara Downing, I Let You Fall
Thank you to TCK Publishing for the advanced copy and to Olga Solodilova on Unsplash for the featured photo.