Their love was unstoppable. Their life was a lie.
And that was how Julie Cohen's latest novel, Together, drew me into the story. This review will avoid spoilers because to give away any of it is a disservice to the story. Julie Cohen uses her carefully effortless writing to embrace readers into a loving life warmly knitted together by Robbie and Emily, before pulling at the stitches to reveal the core that had formed that loving relationship.
Speaking as a reader, I was absorbed into the story by page 3, by the love demonstrated by Robbie to Emily. The love shown at the start wasn't heart-fluttering struck-by-lightning love of new lovers, but a fifty-year-old love that was as comfortable as your favorite tee shirt. By page 8 I was a blubbering mess. I laughed, I cried, I gasped. What I didn't do was put the book down, because I just had to know. Secret after secret hinted at, and so I guessed and guessed, until finally I got it.
Speaking as an author, Together works very well because its structure is so cleverly and meticulously crafted, but it is also very organic in how the entire narrative unfolds. The choice to tell the story from the present to the past made sense. It was not a gimmick. It made sense for the story to be unfolded that way, and it made sense from the characters' perspectives, because this is them going back over the events and the memories that brought them together.
Together is a bittersweet romance that is also a masterclass in plotting. Also, the cover is real darn pretty, absolutely perfect for Instagram posts! Seriously though, check it out. As always, click on the picture for a link.
Julie Cohen is on Twitter so you can always ask her questions or give her your comments directly!