Book Reviews

‘The best moments in reading are when you come across something - a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things - which you had thought special and particular to you. And now, here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out, and taken yours.’ Alan Bennett

“Many a book is like a key to unknown chambers within the castle of one’s own self.” ― Franz Kafka

Sunday, 6 January 2013

When Tomorrow Comes - Joanna Lambert

Set in the 1960’s in England, this compelling saga tale is the first part of a trilogy from this author entitled ‘Behind Blue Eyes.’

I enjoyed this read and was very drawn into the lives of Ella Kendrick and her friends and family, and the other local residents. There is a strong sense of place, the rural setting of Ella’s Grandfather’s farm Willowbrook in Meridan Cross where she has grown up after being abandoned by her mother, her father having passed away.

Her mother Mel has now returned and after eleven years away, she now wants to become a part of Ella’s life again. Ella is open to this, but her elder brother Nick is dead set against it, as for him, it is too little, too late from his mother. Ella gives her mother a chance, despite warnings from those who love her and care about her, including her grandfather. She moves away to Abbotsbridge to be with her mother and her mother’s new partner, Liam, who welcomes Ella to live with them, and provides some level-headedness and good sense when Mel, is set on an idea which to Liam and Ella seems inappropriate, which is often! Mel is more concerned with being involved with the right people, those she deems wealth and successful, and tries to impress this upon Ella, forbidding relationships with those she disapproves of. Ella has to try and come to terms with the less than perfect person that she discovers her mother to be, and to also learn to build her own relationships, and cope with the sadness and disappointment that they can bring, as well as experiencing the joy and elation of being in love. 

Similarly, Mel meddles with Ella’s career aspirations; having dreamed of University and becoming a vet, when she moves to be with her mother, Ella finds herself set upon an entirely different route.

There is so much to discover, I was intrigued by the intricacies of friendships and romances in the story, I felt transported back to those times, with the new music, the young people out in the clubs, the new fashions back then, which the author has incorporated.

The story builds well and I was keen to discover how Ella’s life would change, what course it would take as so much was happening to her; I felt involved in her story and I enjoyed sitting back and reading on to see how her relationship with her mother would alter, and to share her early experiences of love and romance as she falls for Niall and then has to deal with the ups and downs that befall them. Later there will be a new man in her life, but that is for the reader to discover!

The cast of characters is detailed for us at the start of the book, and at first glance seemed extensive but as I read further into the story, the characters are introduced gradually and as we get to know them, the quantity is not a problem at all, and in fact they all give us a fuller, authentic sense of the local communities and the relationships that have been built up between the generations.

My only slight niggle with the text was the way that often after some speech, there is a capital letter used for he said or she said, and so on, when it ought I think to have been in lower case.

I very much enjoyed this debut novel from Joanna Lambert and it left me wondering about what would happen next to all these characters that I had grown to know so well in this first installment, and especially to Ella. 

Published by Authors Online

Thank you to the author for kindly sending me a copy of this novel to read and give an honest review.

You can visit the author's website here and follow her on twitter @Jolambertwriter


  1. Loved your review Lins. I enjoyed the first in the series too. Shaz

    1. It left me wondering what happens to them all. Thanks for commenting Shaz.


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