The Day We Meet Again
By Miranda Dickinson
A love story like no other that proves everything happens for a reason... full of charm, wit and warmth. This will take you on a whirlwind of an adventure.
Book Review, no spoilers I swear!!
Published by HQ, 2019 paperback
This is my first Miranda Dickinson novel and this is a book that has been sat on my shelf for a long while now, before Christmas in fact and I felt like it was time to finally read it. For starters I know I am late to the party of this book with it being released last year but like I always say, a book doesn't have a best before date they are they to be read all year, every year.
As always I will have to thank my fellow book bloggers who have talked about this book prior to me buying it otherwise I would never of discovered this book that in my words is one of the most breathtaking, beautifully written love stories I have read (it's up there with One Day in December and The Songs of Us).
What is this book you speak of Phoebe? The most beautifully written? That's quite a statement.
Well how about I give you the blurb so you can get an idea.
Their love story started with a goodbye...
"We'll meet again at St Pancras station, a year from today. If we're meant to be together, we'll both be there. If we're not, it was never meant to be..."
Phoebe and Sam meet by chance at St Pancras station. Heading in opposite directions, both seeking their own adventures, meeting the love of their lives wasn't part of the plan. So they make a promise: to meet again in the same place twelve months' time if they still want to be together.
But is life ever as simple as that?
This is a story of what-ifs and maybes-and how one decision can change your life forever...
This was chuffin' marvellous, breathtaking, heart-wrenching, frustrating at times but was a piece of art work that I will not be in a rush to forget!
The story starts on 14th June 2017 at St Pancras station where after a delay, Phoebe Jones meets Sam Mullins, a musician by chance. This chance however is what? They're not sure, love at first sight doesn't exist right? But they both feel it. Is this feeling the thing they talk about in every romcoms ever made? However, Sam and Phoebe are heading in different directions, journeys that they have promised themselves, things they need to do by themselves before its too late. Neither of them want to live a life of regret so they go there separate ways only to hopefully meet each other in person a year later.
The chapters flick from Phoebe's and Sam's perspectives so you get to see the journey of both characters which I really loved, it also allowed there to be an exploration of these two character's development as individuals.
Phoebe is on a journey through Europe for a year starting in France, Paris and then through to Rome. This is a journey she has dreamed about doing for a long time but never had the guts to go through with it, her doubts clouding her judgement. Whereas, Sam is on a journey to get answers about his father who abandoned him, his brother and mother when he was nine. Sam must however, travel back to the Isle of Mull (which I googled and oh my! Its beautiful!) where the ghost of his father and his past lurks there. Having not stepped foot on the Island for years Sam is a little more than reluctant to go through with his search. But 23 years is long enough, he deserves answers after all. So why does he fear what the truth will do to him?
As both our characters go on there journeys they keep in touch through many different mediums of communication including text, video calls, emails and my favourite postcards. What I really like about there communication is that it isn't purely based on flirty text messages but hand written thoughts which mean so much more than a text. Trust me on that one, me and my friend send letters while we are at uni, a physical copy of words is always better than an electronic one.
Dickinson's descriptions of the places Phoebe goes to is beautiful as I was reading it my mind was full of bright colours and I know that sounds strange but it was like where Phoebe was it was bursting with colour, life and possibilities of adventure and the perfect escape. How Dickinson describes Sam's journey on the Island is like returning home after a long stay away. Sam's journey being a slow journey that to me felt so raw and the way in which Dickinson portrayed the background of Sam's upbringing was very close to the real thing. I won't tell you what the upbringing of Sam was as I don't want to spoil it but Sam opening old wounds in order to understand and close that chapter of his life was portrayed in a way I can only describe as beautiful. As they both go on there journeys they are faced with past loves, unfinished business and plenty of challenges that question whether they are worth the risk.
I also liked how Dickinson used friendship in this book and that friendship is just as important as finding the love of your life. My favourite was Niven (Sam's friend), who for me seemed to be the crazy, fun and cool guy who tells it as it is but is an old friend who when you see its like you were never apart. Meg (Phoebe's friend) was also my favourite which was strange as I too have a best friend called Megan which when I read it I told her immediately about the book and we were both like, "spooky, what if this is our future." Which it won't as we're both northern to the core and could never imagine living down south. Anyway I loved it how Meg wasn't afraid to speak her mind and tell Phoebe where she was wrong and give her the boot she needed. For me thats what a true friend does. I think that Niven and Meg would make great friends by the way.
Music in this book is central to Sam's character and I loved how music for Sam is his saviour, his medicine because music is something that we all listen to whenever we feel something good or bad. One of my favourite quotes from this book was
"Music takes me by the hand and gently saves me again. And the future doesn't look as cold or empty"
How beautiful is that?
If I could put a soundtrack to this book it would just be The Lumineers. All three of there albums to be honest would suit this book. Stubborn Love though would be the central one for me though and I highly recommend you listen to them if you've never heard of them .
As a whole I loved, loved this book. It had me captured from page one and the journey of our two characters is one full of hope, secrets and plenty of love and warmth. This is a book that shows you everything happens for a reason and that things will happen when the time is right. The final chapter by the way had me on the edge of my seat I was like "will they? won't they? please tell me its a will?!" I think I gave my friends a headache every time I rang them to tell them about what I just read. I know Megan was really invested in the book just as much as me when I gave her an update.
For me this book was like all the best love story films in one. Sliding Doors, Serendipity, When Harry Met Sally. Honestly it was one of the most lovely love stories I have read. It really is one of a kind. I will be looking out for more of Dickinson's books when I go in a bookstore from now on!
If you love Josie Silver, Emma Cooper and Cathy Bramley's work you really do have to give this book a go.
Rating: 4* out of 5
I would so read a follow up!
After all tomorrow is another day spent reading,
Till next time,