The Way From Here
By Jane Turner
Today is my turn on the blog tour with my review for The Way From Here, a book of parenthood, life’s transitions and friendship. Find out more in the blurb and my thoughts in my review below.
Thanks to Random T Tours and the publisher Orion for inviting me to review and for a copy of the book.
Four friends. A lifetime of choices. What comes next?
Kate had been so busy making a place in the world for her daughters, she had somehow forgotten to take care of herself. The life she’d ended up with was not the life she’d planned. Everything was…a compromise.
When Kate’s younger daughter Ella goes off to university, she realises her life has become consumed by the minutiae of family life. In her ’empty nest’, Kate starts to wonder: what now?
Decades after abandoning her university hobby of rowing, Kate gingerly joins a local ladies rowing team and rediscovers her passion for the pleasing rhythmic sensation of paddle slicing through water.
More than anything, though, Kate finds that the team of strong women bring new adventures and unlikely friendships she hadn’t even realised she missed having…
A life-affirming, uplifting story about eight fifty-something women who are all asking the same question about what is next in life for them – and starting to discover the answer together.
The Way From here is told primarily from Kate and Beth’s perspectives, with interjections from Lesley. It begins with Kate taking her daughter, Ella to university. It has all the ingredients in the story that so many parents would be able to relate to when their children get to a certain stage and age in life.
The book quickly gets into the next stage, with Kate getting into a rowing club. The book gets right into the details of rowing, quite cinematically and for the uninitated in rowing, the author has thoughtfully written brief descriptions outwith the main body of the story, of rowing techniques.
This isn’t soley about rowing, so it’s still okay if that isn’t your thing. This is also about reaching a certain stage and age in life and being overlooked. It also shows how groups, even such as a rowing group, has its cliques. On the flipside, it is also about friendship and rediscovering what seemed lost and truly living again and navigating through the maze of another stage of life.
Readers are let into Kate’s psyche, moods and mental health state, really well in a way that you can totally sympathise with her and perhaps even empathise with her if you’re a reader of a similar sort of age. You really get into her head and her thoughts about her life and how she is feeling.
Kate, especially, is a character that truly pops off the page.
All in all though, readers can follow friends through ups and downs of a new phase of life as their nests become empty and they need to work out how to fill the void and find their place in the world again.
It’s a book, perhaps really aimed at an audience slightly older than I, but it is important to read books with strong characters who are that bit older, giving inspiration and a story of how life can be as we enter different stages in life. It’s told well and is both compelling and absorbing. It provides physical energy through the rowing and also through the pathways of life, that you go through with the characters, leading to a very realistic, mature and satisfying ending.