Anna by Amanda Prowse

4 and half 1

Anna is the first of two books making up a whole love story, Theo being the second. Having only read Anna (for the moment) I would say that this is a complete stand-alone story in itself, there is no ‘cliffhanger’ and you don’t need to read the two together, but reading Theo might make you change your mind about the balance of their relationship.

Anna by Amanda Prowse

Amanda Prowse has a natural and easy to read style of writing, is a master at crafting relationships and interactions within family life, and I therefore found Anna a delight to devour. This is quite an unusual concept to have two books written about the two protagonists of the one love story. I can only think of one other book I’ve read in which half the book was written in the viewpoint of the female and flip the book over to read the same story from the viewpoint of the male, so depending on which order you read them, you may have differing views of the main story.

Anna’s story is set over three decades so we get snippets of Anna as a child with her mother, during and after tragic circumstances leaving her in a children’s care home, her working life and her time with Theo. Anna is a lovely well balanced and grounded character despite sad circumstances surrounding her upbringing. She is a character you can like and warm to, she feels like your friend. I love the way Amanda Prowse has given her weaknesses as well as strengths, which brings Anna to life in a very real way. She has a great little coping mechanism for when things get too much for her or if feelings of anxiety are becoming overwhelming, The Alphabet Game, in which she goes through the alphabet listing things around her or how she is feeling to give herself thinking and breathing time – not a bad one to use in our everyday life.

There are some interesting characters to meet along the way – Jordan was the best thing that came out of the disaster of living with her aunt and uncle, and angry Shania becomes one of Anna’s best friends.

I was so pleased when Anna and Theo first met, I’d been anticipating the moment from the very beginning, and felt that they gave off good natural vibes for a long term relationship. It’s not a smooth ride though, and I will definitely be reading Theo to understand his life and hang-ups and hopefully see that they do eventually get a happy ending.

Anna & Theo

Amanda Prowse

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