Below the Big Blue Sky has characters that you instantly fall in love with. The opening chapters brought tears to my eyes as Rabbit passes away in her hospice bed surrounded by her family. Whilst it was her time to go, this doesn’t make it any easier for those she left behind. Particularly for her daughter; Juliet, twelve years old and now without her only parent.
Her uncle; Davey, is now her guardian and whilst it’s clear he has the heart of gold, he is in over his head having been a bachelor all his life touring the world with his band. So why did Rabbit pick him and not her sister; Grace, who has had plenty of experience with kids? But Rabbit had her reasons…
The chapters are told from multiple perspectives – Davey, Grace, Juliet, Molly (Rabbit’s mum), Jack (Rabbit’s dad) and Marjorie (Rabbit’s best friend)… oh and maybe a few more POVs, this is a BIG Irish family with lots of family friends and neighbours too. The warmness of these characters instantly drew me in and made me feel part of the family.
As the months go by and turn into years, the family begin to pick up the pieces and try to fit them back into place, but not all of them fit again, because everything has changed. The events that unfold all stirred different emotions in me from happiness to sadness to surprise. McPartlin’s dynamic writing style changed swiftly and fluidly to reflect the tone of these events perfectly.
A truly emotional and powerful read, that brought me a lot of comfort.
Below the Big Blue Sky is out now in hardback and eBook versions from Zaffre.
Until next time, Chloé x
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