Beth's Book-Nook Blog

Reviews of What I've Been Reading….

Book Shout Out: The Things We Learn When We’re Dead by Charlie Laidlaw

on October 9, 2017

The things we learn COVER FINAL.jpg

The very pleasant Charlie Laidlaw reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in checking out his new novel. To be honest, I have not read it yet, but I’m happy to give a shout out as it sounds really interesting and Charlie seems like a super nice guy! (And quite honestly, in this volunteer business, people who are pleasant and friendly get more from me than complainers and demanders).

Here’s the overview via Amazon:

Intriguing and compelling… a tale that grips until the very last page – Jodi Taylor, bestselling author of The Chronicles of St Mary’s. 

On the way home from a dinner party she didn’t want to attend, Lorna Love steps into the path of an oncoming car. When she wakes up she is in what appears to be a hospital – but a hospital in which her nurse looks like a young Sean Connery, she is served wine for supper, and everyone avoids her questions. It soon transpires that she is in Heaven, or on HVN. Because HVN is a lost, dysfunctional spaceship, and God the aging hippy captain. She seems to be there by accident. Or does God have a higher purpose after all? At first Lorna can remember nothing. As her memories return – some good, some bad – she realises that she has decisions to make and that she needs to find a way home…

More information about the book The Things We Learn When We’re Dead is a modern fairytale of love and loss and, for those readers who want to make the connection, a retelling of The Wizard of Oz: how a young woman comes to reassess her life and find a new beginning. Lorna Love, born and brought up in small-town Scotland, is apparently killed in a car accident on the day of the London bus and tube bombings. But the afterlife isn’t quite what she expected. For a start, Heaven is a broken-down spaceship and God is the double of Sean Connery. However, the book is neither fantasy nor sci-fi; Heaven simply a dreamscape through which Lorna comes to see her life through new eyes – from the people she loved, to the death of her brother. In fulfilling familiar expectations, the book offers a counterpoint between the absurdities of Lorna’s imagined Heaven and banality of her rather ordinary life. The book, grounded in the 9/11 and 7/7 bombings, also offers the metaphor that we are all connected, even by distant events. It is, essentially, a humorous book, using an oblique construct to provide a new perspective on a familiar theme. But, while making the familiar unfamiliar, it also reassures them that Lorna will have her second chance.

“Intriguing and compelling… a tale that grips until the very last page.” Jodi Taylor, best-selling author

“Clever and compelling… this book is hugely original and well worth a read…hugely enjoyable.” Book Bag

“A gem of a book…a really good book about life and growing up.” Book Lore

Charlie Laidlaw was born in the west of Scotland and is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh. He has been a national newspaper journalist and worked in defense intelligence. He is married with two grown-up children. Visit http://www.charlielaidlawauthor.com

Available in the USA at:

Ebook  http://amzn.to/2xDBvkr

Print  http://amzn.to/2wUke2Q

 

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