The emotional, uplifting and completely relatable new novel from Sunday Times bestseller Milly Johnson.
Shay Bastable is the woman in the middle. She is part of the sandwich generation – caring for her parents and her children, supporting her husband Bruce, holding them all together and caring for them as best she can.
Then the arrival of a large orange skip on her mother’s estate sets in motion a cataclysmic series of events which leads to the collapse of Shay’s world. She is forced to put herself first for a change.
But in order to move forward with her present, Shay needs to make sense of her past. And so she returns to the little village she grew up in, to uncover the truth about what happened to her when she was younger. And in doing so, she discovers that sometimes you have to hit rock bottom to find the only way is up.
Shay really is a woman stuck in the middle. She is a mother to two grown up children who like any parent, still worries about them. On top of that she is a daughter to her separated parents who both need caring for as well as trying to be a wife to her husband. She is being pulled in all directions and as a good wife, mother, daughter, she puts all of them first before herself.
The storyline to do with Shay and her mother was especially heart-breaking. They have such a lovely bond and I was quite envious of how close they are. This book goes to show a lot about siblings also and not always the nicer side to them. It is sad that certain events in life that should bring families together, actually drives them apart. All will become clear when you read this novel for yourself.
The author touches on a number of topics, some more emotional than others. There is such warmth and understanding through her writing and at times her words come off the pages to envelop you in a hug just when you need it. Whilst it may touch on darker subjects though, as always, Johnson leaves you feeling elated and uplifted.
The Woman in the Middle is a seriously great read. I would go as far as to say that this is the author’s best one yet. It is written with such emotion that won’t fail to connect with it’s readers on some level. Shay is a character who many of us will be able to relate to and it certainly made me sit back to take stock of my own life and relationships. An endearing and uplifting read that packs a punch!