I buddy read this book with one of my #tribe Rae @ Rae Reads I had a NetGalley version so I was missing chapter numbers and so some chapters ran altogether and got a bit confused at times and I would always read over our agreed spot, but that’s the formatting, not the book, if I had the chapters I think it would be less confusing. This is the first book I have cleared from my 760 books off my NetGalley shelf.
So the book we sped through?
This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. .Bitter by Francesca Jakobi
Published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson on March 20, 2018
It's 1969, and while the summer of love lingers in London, Gilda is consumed by the mistakes of her past.
She walked out on her beloved son Reuben when he was just a boy and fears he'll never forgive her.
When Reuben marries a petite blonde gentile, Gilda takes it as the ultimate rejection.
Her cold, distant son seems transformed by love - a love she's craved his entire adult life. What does his new wife have that she doesn't? And how far will she go to find out?
It's an obsession that will bring shocking truths about the past to light . . .
Bitter is a beautiful and devastating novel about the decisions that define our lives, the fragility of love and the bond between mother and son.
Wow, why I first thought about this book is not what I feel at the end, I mean I have tears!! I didn’t know what I was going to get with this book, I mean Gilda is most definitely on the verge of some sort of breakdown, some of her actions were just unbelievable! One point when she dresses up in this pink dress I was just floored by her audacity in her actions and how situations spiral out of control.
We see Gilda’s life from a young age has been harsh, banished to England by her father, sister despised her and mother hasn’t got any time for her. She is then married off at a young age to someone who is twice as old for her fathers “business relations.” She was not giving a chance to live her life and so mistakes were made, which impacted her future and her relationships.
Gilda’s life begins and ends with her son Reuben, the problem is he just sees her as inconvenience due to actions in the past. He has no time for her so she begins “stalking” for want of a better word his wife. As I said, some actions are questionable, all I will say the scene with the raspberry-red dress!! Gilda will do anything to be close to her son and to build a relationship. The shine is always taken away and his father, Frank, and his wife Berta can do no wrong.
When we learn the through of everything has happened in the last 30 years that’s when my eyes start to leak. So much hardship and grief for one person was palpable and too much. This is Gilda’s story and we watch her come alive in technicolour throughout the book. It is definitely a thought-provoking book as you think about how our actions can affect people later on in life.
Jakobi’s writing entices you along. I kept missing my checkpoints with Rae because I just didn’t want to put the book down and I know she didn’t either so we would keep saying oh I got to x chapter oops! I thought the way the book started that this would be a bit more dark and twisty instead of a coming of age book, and I am thankful for that. Gilda has issues that are clear to see, but in those times they didn’t understand mental health and just thought women were having a “funny turn.” It was hard to see her struggle day to day and not understand why.
When I first started this book, I didn’t like Gilda, I didn’t want to like her. I couldn’t warm to her, although I felt sorry for her by the end, and I most definitely did warm to her. I wanted her to be well and I wanted her to start living her life again. I did wonder if this book would be like Looker by Laura Sims as it has that feel to it initially but no this went down a different path (eventually!).
I am finding to find the right words for Bitter, but it’s hard. The title of the book is spot-on as there is a lot of bitterness in the book and it’s about letting it go because life really is too short. I would definitely read another book by Jakobi because I am fascinated by what she writes. She slowly draws you in, short chapters, interesting complex characters and a storyline to keep you guessing!
Until next time xxx
At the moment, it does not see that Francesca has anything new coming out just yet. Hopefully, something soon to add to my shelf!
Have you read Bitter? What did you thinking? Any book you might recommend based on Bitter?
Until next time xxx
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: