So Very Beautiful
From Now On by Amelia Henley is the most beautiful contemporary novel that totally consumed me. I never wanted it to end.
The novel is about love, loss and family. There are many different types of love – friendship, family, partner and more. Each one requires a step towards another, of making ourselves vulnerable to hurt. If we love deeply, we may hurt deeply too – but it is always worth giving love a chance.
The novel is also about loss. It is a loss that tears souls apart. It hurts. Each family member wades through grief and guilt. “He ate the cookie dough. He caused this and deserves to feel terrible forever.” So raw is the pain, that a character decides he must punish himself and withdraws from his passion and gift of musical talent.
Another character drowns in guilt because she was too busy to say a proper goodbye.
When death occurs, we feel guilty when we smile again. “The world is still turning and he wants to shut it out.” We think all of life should pause, but the world carries on.
If the last thing you ever said to a person was ‘I love you’, you chose well. We must not forget to tell our loved ones that we love them.
Events in the past impact today and tomorrow if we do not deal with them correctly. “He still can’t release his grip on bitterness he’s been carrying around for so long it feels like a part of him.” Living in a prison of bitterness weighs a character down. The past is gone. We cannot change it, but we can learn from it and choose how we live today.
Billie the dog is very much a character in her own right. She senses when her human family is upset. Sometimes we pour our feelings into our pets when we do not know what to do with our feelings.
We see the devastating impact of bullying on a young life. If you are being bullied, you must speak out and get help.
The pain of loss cuts so deep that it is only relieved by self-harm. This is sensitively portrayed. Again, if this resonates with you, please tell someone and get help.
All the characters were wonderfully drawn. I loved them all. They felt like dear friends. I wanted to love them better.
From Now On is such a beautiful book.
I received a free copy from the publishers for a blog tour. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.