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Miss You: A Novel by Kate Eberlen

Miss You: A Novel (edition 2018)

by Kate Eberlen (Author)

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1187102,161 (3.72)6
Title:Miss You: A Novel
Authors:Kate Eberlen (Author)
Info:Harper Paperbacks (2018), Edition: Reprint, 448 pages
Collections:read and own
Tags:fiction, read in 2018, England, Italy, grief, giveaways, Early Reviewers

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Miss You: A Novel by Kate Eberlen



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Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Absolutely loved it! I think some books just find a way into your life at the right time and this might be a case of that. Maybe six months from now I wouldn't feel quite the same way but this was just the perfect read for me at the moment. The premise isn't really groundbreaking as it's just a story about two people who meet in Italy and share a brief moment in time but go back to England alone. The book follows their lives for the next 16 years as they experience heartache, love, etc..

On an emotional level I just really connected with the characters, particularly Tess. I had a feeling early on this would be a tear jerker and sure enough it was. This might be a depressing read for some but I couldn't put it down as there is something about following characters over the course of years that just gets me every time. Really loved this one!

I won a free copy of this book from LibraryThing but was under no obligation to post a review. All views expressed are my honest opinion. ( )
  fastforward | Jun 14, 2018 |
In 1995 Tess is inter railing through Italy with her friend Doll and awaiting the A level results which will make her the first in the family to go to University. Gus is in Florence with his parents, a family fractured by the death of Gus' brother. The two bump into each other a couple of times but it doesn't really register. Over the next 16 years Tess and Gus make their own ways in the world, oblivious to each other until they meet and then it all becomes clear - they were meant to be together.

Giving a plot synopsis like this makes me feel as though this is the last book I would be interested in reading and yet I loved every second of it! Tess and Gus are likeable characters and, whilst I felt real frustration with their actions and lives, they are sympathetic and relatable. Yet it still has a lot of social commentary on class, prejudice etc, loads of little asides that place it firmly in the era that is the subject of that section and a good dollop of pathos which is handled well. This is far better than run of the mill chick lit, Eberlen has crafted a genuinely warm book that wraps round you - it almost wants to be read on the sofa in winter with a mug of hot chocolate, it's that cosy. ( )
  pluckedhighbrow | Jun 26, 2017 |
Miss You is Kate Eberlen's absolutely wonderful debut novel.

I loved the cover as it reminded me of a patchwork quilt. And then I looked a little closer at the pictures in the letters. It is two people who always seem to be headed in a different direction, never quite meeting. And that is the premise of Miss You.

Miss You opens in 1997 when both Tree (short for Teresa) and Gus are on holiday in Italy. They both happen to visit a church at the same time, exchange a few words and then go on with their lives.

Eberlen has created rich, full lives for both Tree and Gus. But not perfect - their lives are also filled with loss, grief, anger along with the happy moments. Miss You is told in alternating chapters, in the same time frame, from the two as the years progress. And unusually for me, I didn't have a favourite - I liked them both the same. I became so caught up in each of their lives and kept reading 'just one more chapter' to see what might happen next.

What happened next, but also where. For you see, in every new time period, there's a moment when their paths cross. Not directly at first, but in passing, without recognizing that they've already met.

"We think we choose our friends, but perhaps it's only just a matter of chance."
"Do you believe in the one? As in, there's one person out there who's destined for you?"

With every new entry and years passing, I found myself hoping for that 'star-crossed lovers' moment that their paths would cross. Do they? Will things come full circle? I'm not saying - you'll have to read Miss You to find out.

I adored this book - it's warm, witty, heartwarming and real - with a touch of just maybe.......I'm looking forward to what Kate Eberlen writes next! ( )
  Twink | May 1, 2017 |
Fate or chance? Does destiny exist or is everything random? Statistics can explain everything, right? Could you be happy with a number of different people or is there only "The One" for you? If there is just one person for everyone, is there a perfect time to meet that person and what happens if you meet them before you or they are ready? Questions like these come up very frequently when people talk about love and the answers can be debated indefinitely. In Kate Eberlen's new novel, Miss You, the main characters cross and recross each others' paths for years, never quite making the connection that brings them together. Does Fate keep bringing them together until she gets it right or are these chance encounters just that, chance? Tess and Gus are meant to be, or are they?

Tess and her best friend Doll are in Florence towards the end of their last vacation before Tess goes off to university. Gus is in Florence with his parents as they all face the sudden, shocking loss of his older brother. Tess and Gus run into each other in a beautiful, quiet church and then again on the street in Florence but they each go their own way, returning to the lives that each had planned. This may be the first time they come across each other, but it certainly won't be the last.

When Tess gets home, she is blindsided by the fact that her mother is very ill. Her five year old sister's care all falls to her and when their mother dies, Tess's dreams of university die with her. Someone has to be there to take care of Hope and that someone is Tess. Nothing about her life is the way she planned it. Meanwhile Gus is not in charge of his own life either, compelled to live up to a memory (one that perhaps isn't as honest as it should be) and choosing to train as a doctor because that's what his father wants for him and that's what his brother was doing. Like Tess's, his life is far from what he once dreamed and wanted. Both characters go along living their lives sometimes seeming to move towards each other and other times away. As they go about their daily lives, experiencing events major and minor, there are constant near misses between the two of them, times where they might have connected or met but didn't, times when they crossed each others' paths but didn't pause, times when their lives almost intersected but then didn't.

The novel is told in chapters alternating from Tess's first person perspective to Gus's first person perspective so neither of them know how close they occasionally come to meeting the other but the reader sees them slip past each other time after time after time. Spanning 16 years, the chapters sometimes jump in time, showing Tess and Gus at major decision points in their lives and giving the reader the general shape of their lives. But their lives are not parallel, nor are they combined except in the very beginning in Florence and when they finally meet in the end. For the majority of the novel, they live very separate lives, without any knowledge of each other and their situations. Both of them are damaged by their losses and face difficulties that reverberate throughout their lives and relationships. Gus always feels he's competing with his dead brother and coming up short. Tess not only becomes the primary caregiver to her sister, where things get even more complicated when their father essentially checks out after Hope is diagnosed with Asperger's, but she also lives with the fear of dying young of breast cancer just like her mother. Neither of the characters is entirely likable and Gus especially does some pretty reprehensible things but they are very real, the both of them.

The separateness of their two lives and therefore the two plot lines might cause some readers a bit of frustration but Eberlen seems to know just when to insert a near miss to remind the reader that while these two are currently living lives unknown to each other, they are in fact close enough to touch. Because of the first person narration, it can be hard to know the secondary characters and sometimes the reader needs to be reminded that these minor characters are being filtered through the main characters' eyes. After so many years of Tess and Gus passing like ships in the night, and in some ways that journey is everything, the ending feels rushed even if the reader knew that's where it was going all along. Leaving aside the predictable quickness of the ending, this is definitely a different and interesting take on the "what ifs" of life. A worthy addition to your beach bag for sure. ( )
  whitreidtan | Apr 26, 2017 |
A special thank you to Edelweiss and HarperCollins for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

This book was a combination of One Day, and something by Liane Moriarty — really a fun read!

My criticism would be maybe with the genre? Is it me, or are the leading ladies in these types of books often a bit pathetic? From affairs, to accidental pregnancies, to self-sacrificial situations that boarder on martyrdom. Ugh... Too much of this stalls the story, and makes the female lead (and in this case, male lead as well) rather weak and at times unlikable. Speaking of unlikable, I really had a hard time with Gus. Why did he have to cheat on his lovely girlfriend with his dead brother's fiancée, Charlotte, who is incredibly frigid and appears to be out of his league?

What I did like was the premise of the book. Chance meetings, fated lovers, and the unwavering belief in romance. There were parts that were simply delightful and endearing, and I would definitely read more by this author and recommend this book for a fun summer read.
( )
  GirlWellRead | Feb 25, 2017 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0062460226, Hardcover)

In the tradition of One Day, a wryly romantic story about two strangers who meet briefly as teens in Florence and whose paths cross again many times over the course of the next sixteen years, until they’re finally brought back together

What if the person you’re looking for is standing right next to you, and you don’t even know it?

“Today is the first day of the rest of your life,” reads the motto on a plate in the kitchen at home, and Tess can’t get it out of her head, even though she’s in Florence for a final, idyllic holiday before she starts university in London.

Gus and his parents are also visiting Florence, seven months after their lives changed suddenly and tragically. Gus, headed to medical school, is trying to be a dutiful son, but he longs to escape and discover who he really is.

On that day, the paths of an eighteen-year-old girl and boy criss-cross before they each return to England, to futures that are wildly different from the ones they’d envisioned for themselves.

Over the course of the next sixteen years, life and love will offer them very different challenges. Separated by distance and fate, there’s no way the two of them are ever going to meet each other—until they each find themselves back in Florence, all those years later….

(retrieved from Amazon Sat, 17 Sep 2016 18:41:26 -0400)

"In the tradition of ONE DAY, a wryly romantic debut story about two strangers who meet briefly as teens in Florence and whose paths cross again many times over the course of the next sixteen years, until they're finally brought back together"--

(summary from another edition)

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