Hayley Doyle comes to the blog with her debut offering, a story of stagnation in many forms with
Never Saw You Coming
A story told from two perspectives with two entirely different people. Zara is a butterfly – flitting from one place to another and currently moving from Dubai to Liverpool to surprise her ‘long-term internet boyfriend’ for his birthday. Jim is born and bred in Liverpool, never left and even with his degree is stagnant and working at the toll booths and living above a chip shop. The only one of his parents three children to stay nearby, he watches out for his mother, spends time with his friends, works and reads. Always with a book to hand. Both are searching for something: Jim to make life easier for his mother, hoping to get her to America to meet her grandchildren and spend time with her daughters. Zara is looking for love. A series of bad choices, a tendency to overthink, and being shuffled from place to place since childhood left her rootless and feeling invisible. Dubai and the Ex-Pat community is great for a party, but she’s got no real, solid friendships or ties. Believing that Nick in Liverpool was her “one” she packs everything, arranges to buy a little car on landing at Heathrow, and heads off.
This was an interesting tale as we get to know both Jim and Zara through their own retelling of their concerns, histories, and the point where their lives collide, literally and they are thrown together for a journey of a few days, many miles and plenty of time to talk, think and perhaps even form a connection. Both are desperately seeking something: with world-views and perspectives that are miles apart, they couldn’t be more different: but there’s something in Jim that settles Zara: she feels cared about, if not always comfortably. And Jim’s natural go-to is pessimism: not expecting much and therefore not seeking it. Together the two find revelations about themselves that were always there, but unseen, and until circumstances tear them apart, a connection that both will think on for a while.
Forcing yourself out of your comfort zone and pushing beyond the fears and insecurities is the upshot of the story: with Zara returning to Liverpool to find Jim whilst Jim has (with much pressure from friends) headed to Dubai to find her brings the story to an unexpected twist, not the ‘happily ever after’ that Zara sought from day one, and not quite the ‘stagnant and same old” life that Jim knew – providing opportunity for more and left to the reader’s imagination. One moment, a chance circumstance and a few hours of together managed to change two lives in ways unexpected – and made for an intriguing read that had you empathizing with the characters, cheering them on and wanting them to find “it all”. A very promising start for a new author – sure to bring many loyal readers to her corner.
Title: Never Saw You Coming
Author: Hayley Doyle
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Dual Narration, Humor elements, New Adult - Coming of Age, Romantic Elements, Second Chance, Setting: Britain
Published by: Avon Books UK
Published on: 2 April, 2020
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon
Some people go looking for love. Others crash right into it.
Zara Khoury believes in love – so much so that she flies from Dubai to Liverpool to be with a man she barely knows. It’s a risk, but she’s certain that uprooting her life for Nick is the new start she needs.
Jim Glover is stuck. Since his Dad died, he’s put his dreams aside and stayed at home in Liverpool to care for his mum. Trapped in a dead-end job, he’s going nowhere – that is, until he gets a phone call that just might change his life..
Zara and Jim aren’t supposed to meet. But then fate steps in, and when their worlds – and cars! – collide, the real journey begins…
A gorgeous tale about taking risks and living life to the full – perfect for fans of Beth O’Leary and Josie Silver.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.