Outback Promise by Maggie Bolitho (Book Review)

Outback PromiseOutback Promise by Maggie Bolitho

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

What this book is about:

In this book, we follow Ros (Rosalyn), a 45 year old woman who is married to Grady. Grady has asked his wife to join him on a 3-month adventure on the outback of Australia and she reluctantly agrees. This journey is meant to heal past wounds that this couple has, due to the death of their 4-year-old son, 6 years ago. Since then nothing has been the same for them and their relationship is falling apart day by day. Are they going to come back from the outback stronger or is their marriage doomed?

This story was quite hard for me to follow. Even though I liked it and I did think that it was well written and meticulously paced, there was one big wall that stood before me while I tried to go through this book. The story is narrated from Ros’s point of view. This allows us, the readers, to understand her thoughts and feelings through many different situations. But also we get to experience a marriage from a wife’s side. A marriage where two people have experienced such an unthinkable loss that they have changed in an irreversible degree.

The death of their only child has broken two people that were so strong together and cannot realise how weak they are apart. This book is about forgiveness and moving on, two things that seem impossible in times like this but maybe they are not. It was so interesting looking through the eyes of a middle aged woman and seeing her husband and how she chooses to respond to him. How a woman can love her husband and support him, take care of him and also accept him.

And that’s the reason I had trouble following the story. I am only 23 years old. I cannot really understand how it is to be in a marriage or to have lost a child. I felt like I caught a glimpse of a relationship but I could never get to the core of it and feel it for myself. I couldn’t experience almost anything of what Ros and Grady were feeling because it felt so far away. But the fact that I did enjoy this story, shows me that Maggie Bolitho did a very good job presenting and building her characters through hard, unimaginable times.

Another part of the book that I found very entertaining and quite interesting was the trip part that Ros and Grady took. They met some weird characters, dangerous, generous, funny and sad people. That’s real life. Everybody has their own story and their own burden to carry. When you go on an adventure you are sure to meet some strange and unusual individuals that will stick with you for a long time, giving you small life lessons and changing you bit by bit.

This is a well written book. The author explores her characters, mainly Ros, in depth and doesn’t rush her story to the end. Instead, she took the time to build the past and present of Ros and Grady and plot a journey with exciting but also dull moments. Because a journey is not constantly an adventure and even small, everyday-life scenes came together and integrated nicely with the whole story.

This is an adult fiction book and it’s still not my time to completely understand a story about a marriage, but I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys adult fiction and character development in a book.

I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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