Book Review: Unbreak Your Heart by Katie Marsh

I was sent an ARC of this back in March, but hadn’t had time to read it before it was published in May 2021 – and finally started reading it on our summer holiday. Here’s the blurb:

“Seven-year-old Jake’s heart is failing and he doesn’t want to leave his dad, Simon, alone. So he makes a decision: to find Simon someone to love before he goes.
Beth is determined to forget the past. But even when she leaves New York to start afresh in a Lake District village, she can’t shake the secrets that haunt her.
Single dad Simon still holds a candle for the woman who left him years ago. Every day is a struggle to earn a living while caring for his beloved son. He has no time for finding someone new.
But Jake is determined his plan will succeed – and what unfolds
will change all three of them forever.”

The book starts with Beth bumping into Simon and Jake – literally! The Lake District setting is a character in the book itself in all of its rugged beauty.

The whole book is beautifully written – and I really loved all of the characters. There were times I wanted to shout at them – but in a supportive way, not an overly frustrated way.

Simon’s love for his son is HUGE throughout the book. I have a child with a chronic illness (although thankfully not life limiting like Jake who has HLHS) but that meant that some of the elements of hospital visits and worrying were very, very close to home.

The book is fundamentally a love story – but not just romantic love – it’s love between a parent and child and grandchild, and friends, and family – it’s beautiful.

A really lovely escapist read.