Monday, 23 July 2018

#BlogBlitz Happy Publication Day! Forgive Me Not by Samantha Tonge

Happy Publication Day to Forgive Me Not by Samantha Tonge. It's a story about addiction and the fight towards recovery. It's brutally honest at times and doesn't pretend the world is a romcom or an episode of  Friends.

About the Author
Samantha Tonge lives in Manchester UK and her passion, second to spending time with her husband and children, is writing. She studied German and French at university and has worked abroad, including a stint at Disneyland Paris. She has travelled widely.

When not writing she passes her days cycling, baking and drinking coffee. Samantha has sold many dozens of short stories to women’s magazines.

In 2013, she landed a publishing deal for romantic comedy fiction with HQDigital at HarperCollins and in 2014, her bestselling debut novel, Doubting Abbey, was shortlisted for the Festival of Romantic Fiction best Ebook award. In 2015 her summer novel, Game of Scones, hit #5 in the UK Kindle chart and won the Love Stories Awards Best Romantic Ebook category.

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Buy Forgive Me Not

About the book
Forgiveness can be hard to come by… An unputdownable new novel from bestseller Samantha Tonge
How far would you go to make amends?
When Emma fled her home at Foxglove Farm, she’d let down and hurt those who cared for her most. But now, two years later, she’s ready to face up to her past; she’s ready to go back.
But Emma’s unannounced return causes more problems than she could have foreseen. The people she knew and loved aren’t ready to forget, let alone forgive. And the one person she wants to reconnect with the most, her mother, can’t remember who she is.
Just as Emma starts to rebuild trust, an uncovered family secret and a shocking past crime threaten her newly forged future...
Sometimes simply saying sorry isn’t enough.
Perfect for readers of Ruth Hogan or Amanda Prowse, this is an extraordinary and unforgettable novel about running away from yourself – and finding a way back.

How far would you go to make amends? It's a good question, but for me the more important question is whether every act should be forgiven, just so the guilty party can feel better about themselves?

Emma is an alcoholic. Her drinking has cost her friendships, jobs, her family and her reputation. She rationalises every bad decision she makes and likes to blame everyone but the person feeding the habit. A common story, and it's fair to say this story doesn't focus on the victims as much as on the the addict and her attempt to make amends.

Emma makes her way home and attempts to fix her broken friendships and family ties. They have no real concept of the way she has spent the last few years and are reluctant to give her another chance. She also brings her second life home with her, which causes a lot of friction in the community.

Tonge reproduces the uncomfortable reactions of the general population really well in relation to the homeless. Questions of guilt, powerlessness, doubt and fear are mixed with general misconceptions about these people, who are caught in a cycle of addiction, lack of support and strict bureaucracy.

Kudos to Tonge for shedding a light on the way society treats the homeless and the difficulties they have on the street, especially whilst trying to get back into the flow of a 'normal' life. It's important to add that not all homeless people have substance abuse problems, it is however true that the majority do. It's another story and statistic whether the substance abuse came before or after becoming homeless.

Addiction is a cruel foe, it doesn't care about emotions or relationships, it is greedy and just wants to be fed. The author shows the destruction of addiction and how much damage the loss of trust can cause in relationships and in a family dynamic.

Emma is selfish, self-absorbed and sees everything through her own frame of reference, which is tainted by her need to numb and forget all of her presumed grievances. Even when she seems to understand the damage she has caused she always brings it back to how she feels, as opposed to how everyone else might be feeling.

It's an uncomfortable read at times, because it walks the thin boundaries between reality and fiction really well. The author doesn't present a sympathetic main character, instead she gives the readers the stark realism of the addict and their thought process.

I think it is a read that will make readers sway one way or the other. At the very least it gives an intimate insight into the complexity of a downwards spiral and the never-ending road to recovery. A road which can sometimes be smooth, but also forces the addict to deal with the occasional sinkhole and crossroads. It's an honest and heartfelt read.

Buy Forgive Me Not at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.
Buy at Kobo Google or itunes
Publisher: Canelo

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