One for Sorrow, Two for Joy by Marie-Claire Amuah

The November pick for the online book club from ‘The Book Taster’ was ‘One for Sorrow, Two for Joy’ by Marie-Claire Amuah. And I know we should not judge a book by its cover, but, oh my word, what an absolutely stunning cover this book has. If you have not seen it, check it out because it is just an absolute joy to look at. Although do not be fooled that this book is a light read; it is a fantastic story, but it tackles some tough topics, including domestic abuse and mental health issues.

We follow Stella from her troubled childhood into what appears to be a very successful career in law. She has a close group of friends and may even have found herself a wonderful man. But as the tale unfolds, is history just repeating itself? Is Stella in the same cycle she was in as a child, or is she repeating the experience that she witnessed her mother go through? Stella is forced to take a long-hard look at her present, her past and maybe re-evaluate the relationship she has with her brother. Is her view of him the correct one, or was his childhood also hard, but in a different way that Stella may have missed?

This is a beautifully written book that tackles difficult topics with sensitivity and, although moments may shock, it is all part of the narrative, and not just an attempt to make the read shocking. It will definitely be a book that is worth discussing with a book club. There are so many thought-provoking moments amongst its pages. However, I think the thing that really struck me was the importance of self-worth, and how the emotions we have towards ourselves can have so much of an impact on us and our decisions, even if we do not always realise it. As well as the importance of friendship, and in this case sisterhood, our friends are often the family we choose, and they are often some of the people who offer us more support than we may realise.

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