2013 Book Reviews

By My Side by Alice Peterson

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‘One step can change everything…

Cass Brooks loves her job, her boyfriend Sean, her life. Until, leaving home one morning, distracted and hungover, she steps into the path of a truck.

When she wakes up, she can’t walk. And suddenly all her hopes and dreams, the plans she’d made with Sean, the future she thought she’d have, seem out of her reach.

But the fate intervenes again, Cass meets Ticket, a loyal golden Labrador who refuses to leave her side. And on a flight to Colorado, she sits next to Charlie, who believes he can show her a life full of possibilities, if only she’ll let him.

Cass wants her life back the way it was. Charlie knows this cannot be. Yet a future beckons all the same…’

Firstly I want to thank Alice Peterson and Quercus Books for allowing me a copy of By My Side to review.

I first became a fan of Alice’s when I read Ten Years On, so when I read the blurb for this I knew I was in for a brilliant read that would send me through a roller coaster of emotions. And it certainly did!

Everything you need to know is in the blurb right there, I’m not sure I could add much more but I will certainly give it a go.

So Cass a medical student, suffering a awful injury has to adjust to life in a wheelchair. Recovering in hospital, her boyfriend Sean dumps her, BY LETTER! (I know what a dirty scumbag right, I had to refrain from screaming at him!)

Cass while in hospital meets Dom, a happy-go-lucky joker and Guy, who is finding it harder than most to adjust and is grumpy and frustrated but eventually becomes a bit of a softie.
They become key parts of her life and her recovery, understanding each other in ways family and old friends cannot.

Back living with her parents and giving up her life of medicine, Cass goes through some very low points. Some bits had me weeping because I really felt for her and her frustrations that life was going in the exact opposite direction to what she ever wanted or expected.

On a trip out with her mum they “stumble” across a centre where they train dogs to assist people like Cass to live more independently. And this is where she meets Ticket.
Ticket changes Cass’s life, he makes her more determined to live a fuller life and makes her see how life can be.

This leads her to taking a trip skiing (I know mind boggling but incredible) which then brings Charlie into her life. Who, I won’t mind admitting I found quite dishy, bit boy did he frustrate me at times.

I adored this book. It was so heart-warming and genuinely lovely. It was superbly written and well researched.

I think Cass was strong willed, determined and vulnerable. Hearing the story through her voice was a real eye opener and left me with a lot of respect for people that live with these disabilities everyday, it’s easy to forget how good we have it sometimes.
It also left me with massive respect for charities that train dogs to assist with living, because not only do they provide help, they provide companionship, love and independence.

A truly remarkable read that had me laughing, sobbing and cheering our heroine on!

This book is due for release on July 18th and I suggest it makes it’s way into your hands.

Here is the link to grab your own copy;


3 thoughts on “By My Side by Alice Peterson

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