I’m delighted to welcome you today to my stop on the blog tour for the beautifully written and emotional Expectation by Anna Hope. Thank you to Anne Cater for the invitation and to Doubleday Books for my proof copy of this mesmerising and unforgettable book.
About the book:
Hannah, Cate and Lissa are young, vibrant and inseparable.
Living on the edge of a common in East London, their shared world is ablaze with art and activism, romance and revelry – and the promise of everything to come.
They are electric. They are the best of friends.
Ten years on, they are not where they hoped to be.
Amidst flailing careers and faltering marriages, each hungers for what the others have.
And each wrestles with the same question:
what does it take to lead a meaningful life?
EXPECTATION is a novel of the highs and lows of friendship – how it can dip, dive and rise again. It is also about finding your way: as a mother, a daughter, a wife, a rebel.
Most of all, it explores that liminal space between expectation and reality,
the place – full of dreams, desires and pain – in which we all live our lives.
About the author:
ANNA HOPE studied at Oxford University and RADA. Her contemporary fiction debut, Expectation, explores themes of love, lust, motherhood, and feminism, while asking the greater question of what defines a generation.
She lives in Sussex with her husband and young daughter.
What happened to the women we were supposed to become?
Isn’t that a question most of us have asked ourselves from time to time? I know I have. I often think about all the hopes and dreams I and my friends had all those years ago, most of which did not come to fruition.
Expectation by Anna Hope is a beautifully written and emotional novel that explores just that. Hannah, Cate and Lissa were young, vibrant and inseparable. Living together in a gorgeous old house on the edge of a common in London, they had the world at their feet. Their days were filled with art, activism, romance and revelry, with their lives stretched out before them full of promise and expectation.
But ten years on they are not where they thought they’d be. Life has not been particularly kind to any of them. Hannah is desperate to conceive a child, so is going through yet another gruelling round of IVF treatment, Lissa is a failing actress who is still waiting for her big break, and Cate is a new mum struggling to cope with motherhood and all that comes along with it.
The story is told from each woman’s point of view, showing how their friendship has changed and evolved over the years, the ups and downs they have all gone through, from the heady days of their youth right through to their late thirties and early forties, when life has not turned out how they had expected it to.
I was taken by surprise at just how much this book got under my skin, moving me beyond words as I travelled through the years with these girls and women who I could see so much of myself in. As a woman about to turn fifty I know all too well that life doesn’t always turned out as we planned.
I often wonder what happened to the vibrant young girl I used to be, the one who wasn’t afraid of anything. Where did she go? The truth is, she’s still there somewhere, buried beneath the responsibilities of life. Maybe one day the girl I used to be will find the courage to lift her head up into the sunlight once again.
Expectation is a book that will stay with me. I felt bereft as I turned the final page, not wanted to say goodbye to these characters I had grown to love. Flawed as they are, Hannah, Cate and Lissa shine a spotlight on the reality and disappointment of life through the years… and I love them for it. Their actions are not always kind or the right thing to do, but they feel so real, their pain feels so real, and they mirror the imperfections that are in us all.
Anna Hope has written a mesmerising and unforgettable book that broke my heart into a million pieces, but somehow still managed to put it back together again, leaving me with a feeling of hope as I finally and unwillingly closed the last page of this stunning and thought provoking book. Bravo!
Expectation by Anna Hope is available to buy now: Amazon UK
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