It looked like love, it felt like love. But this is not a love story.
With 12 novels under her belt and counting, British author Holly Bourne may be a name you have heard of, but if not, she should be. She has a knack for writing amazing novels, both young adult and adult, that make your heart melt and break. In her latest YA novel though, it is all about the recovery.
Amelie loved her boyfriend Reese, and he loved her. Or so she thought, but she’s beginning to realise that love isn’t supposed to hurt like this. After an assembly on memory maps, she is inspired to create one of her own, to help her work out why her relationship with Reese is over. On her journey she travels to all the places where she has cried publicly, and if she works out what went wrong, maybe she will finally be able to get over him.
Many of Holly Bourne’s young adult books have looked into how hard it is to be a teenager, such as dealing with mental illness. However, this novel ventures into the reality and recovery of being someone who has been in, or still is, in an abusive relationship. Bourne’s writing makes you feel so much empathy for the main character in every book she writes, and the amount of pain Amelie goes through within the book is heartbreaking.
On October 24th on the final leg of her book tour, Holly Bourne had a chat with women’s aid in Manchester Waterstones. In the chat, she discussed what inspired her to write the book and why it is so important for young girls to recognise the signs of abusive behaviour in their significant others. One of the things that helped inspire her this book was her experience as a youth counsellor – many young girls would come to her and talk about how their partners treated them in a relationship, and unfortunately, the overwhelming amount of girls saw this as normal behaviour. She also went on to say that if you feel that one of your friends is in an abusive relationship, the best thing you can do is remain a constant in their life.