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Saturday, June 24, 2017

BLOG TOUR & REVIEW: Before You Were Mine by Em Muslin @Quaintrellem @HQDigitalUK @HQStories @booksandthebear

Before You Were Mine
Em Muslin
Harper Collins, HQ Digital

You guys probably saw my Spotlight of this book earlier this week.  I'm happy to be the last stop on this blog tour today!  See below for the synopsis, my review, author info and links for purchase.


Sometimes hope has a way of changing everything…
Just hours after giving birth, Eli Bell is forced to give up her newborn baby daughter for adoption. Devastated, she tries desperately to rebuild her shattered life.
Then, over thirty years later, Eli catches sight of her daughter. And she knows that she must do everything to find a way back into her life. Even if it means lying…

While her husband Tommy must grow to accept his own part in the events of her early life, he can only try to save her before her obsession with the young woman ruins them both.

Don’t miss the breathtaking debut Before You Were Mine by Em Muslin! Perfect for fans of Jodi Picoult, Alice Peterson and Lucy Dillon.

My Review

At the age of 14, Eli has given birth, had the baby taken from her arms by the signature of her mother, ostracized by her family and the town she lives in.... she leads a lonely existence.  Enter Tommy, a local guy who has always fancied her.  Takes her as his wife and she makes the most of her situation, unable to give Tommy any children and pining for the daughter that was taken from her.

Seeing her daughter everywhere, she is convinced that this time, she's right.  The girl at the grocery store HAS to be her.  She will find a way to prove it - but until then, she starts down a road of lies and deception.  Will she finally get the answers she wants or will she have to go through yet another loss.  Thirty three years is a long time to mourn... a long time to hope... and a long time to wait.  

This contemporary novel touches on loss, hope, redemption, relationships and how far a person would go to fill that empty spot in their heart.  Obsession is a mean monster and the author intricately shows how it takes a hold of someone.  The mind will sometimes fight back and only show you what you want to see rather than what is actually there.  This book travels back and forth in Eli's life - from her childhood to her present day.  I had a little bit of issue with the formatting but I think that was just an ebook issue - sometimes it felt like it jumped from one character to another and I would have to reread certain spots to figure out where I was.  I feel the print issue would alleviate from this.  This is a bit of a slow burn of a novel.  However, the last 10% had me rooting for Eli, feeling Tommy's feelings thoroughly - seeing her through his eyes.  

Em Muslin has worked in the film and television industry for over 20 years. She first fell in love with reading and writing after experiencing Judith Kerr's 'When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit'. She hasn't stopped devouring books ever since. 

She loves words that capture an experience or emotion in a singular form: her current favourite, describing herself, is 'nemophilist'. 

Em's writing focuses on the texture of domestic life, relationships, family and the pressures of social convention. Her characters are often fighting to become the hero of their own story, searching for hope, despite the adversities that life inevitably brings.

Literary, contemporary, romance, suspense.

Book links:
Barnes & Noble:

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