Say My Name is the new release from Allegra Huston due for publication on 27th July by HQ Stories (a Harper Collins Imprint)
Described as ‘an unforgettable story of one woman’s journey to self-empowerment’, Say My Name tells the story of Eve Armanton, a middle-aged woman who is faced with some life-changing choices.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank HQ stories and NetGalley for my advanced copy and as ever my review is both voluntary and unbiased…
‘This is the time to run away, she thinks, to call it a mistake, to race back to home and safety. If I don’t go home I will never feel safe again.’
On meeting Micajah Burnett, the son of an old school friend, Eve Armanton is faced with a choice. Years of a miserable marriage means she’s as broken as the beautiful antique violin she’s just found, and Micajah offers a spark of life, an opportunity to reawaken her sense.
If Eve takes a leap into this new world, she’ll be leaving behind her old self for good. Her happiness depends on forging a new life, but at the end of her journey who will Eve have become?
Eve Armanton is a 48-year-old woman stuck in a floundering marriage. Her son Allan is currently working with a medical charity in Cambodia, during a gap year from college as a med student. Eve’ s husband Larry is going through some kind of emotional mid-life crisis and Eve is lost and alone.
A garden designer by trade, Eve spends her weekends trawling antique shops looking for items of interest for her friend Deborah’s shop.
‘The strange objects she finds ignite her imagination, conjuring up lives more exciting and more terrifying, than the low-intensity safety of her own.’
On one of these trips into the city of New York she discovers a beautiful but very damaged violin hidden amongst the cobwebs and dust in the darkness of a shop. The detailing of the patterns on the violin are exquisite but the back has been damaged in a most violent way, the wood shattered through anger or frustration. ‘She can almost feel remnants of the emotion stuck to the gash, like specks of dried blood.’
Before she is even fully aware of what she is doing, Eve purchases the violin and continues on her journey into a Manhattan library….the start of a journey that will change her life forever…
Micajah Burnett is the twenty-eight-year old son of an old school friend of Eve’s brother Bill. Eve, while heading toward the library, hears her name being called out and it is Micajah and his father Robert. Eve joins them for lunch and discovers that Micajah is a musician.
Eve feels a very strong connection to Micajah from the outset. His attitude to life, his general demeanor all awaken something in Eve.
‘This boy – he’s a boy, she insists to herself, though she knows he must be twenty-eight or twenty-nine-is throwing her off her axis…..When she dares to look back at Micajah, the green gaze is like a wave rushing across a space between them to drench her, sweep her up, carry her away. Stop! she thinks. But she does not want it to end.’
The relationship that soon develops between Eve and Micajah is fraught with sexual tension. Eve has to make some major decisions, as with each step closer to Micajah she takes, she moves a step further away from the life she is so familiar with.
Say My Name is a story about music and love. It is a story about a woman who has reached a point in her life when she has to face up to the reality of her existence. As opportunities arise that re-ignite long lost feelings, Eve is scared. How far is she prepared to go? Will she ever be the same again?
Say My Name is certainly a very different novel for me. There was something quite ethereal about the writing style used by Allegra Huston that I really liked. As a reader, you can feel the strength of Eve’s emotions as you join her on this voyage of self-discovery.. I felt a very strong parallel between the damaged violin and Eve as she tackles with her conscience.
Yet, overall I have very mixed feelings about the book. There are parts I found quite poetic and beautiful, yet other parts were just a little too orchestrated. For me there was just something missing, a connection I didn’t feel.
Say My Name is a book that will raise quite diverse opinions among many readers so you will just have to pick up a copy yourself to find out more….
Purchase Link ~ Say My Name
Allegra Huston has written screenplays, journalism, and one previous book, Love Child: A Memoir of Family Lost and Found. After an early career in UK publishing, including four years as Editorial Director of Weidenfeld & Nicolson, she joined the film company Pathé as development consultant.
She wrote and produced the award-winning short film Good Luck, Mr. Gorski, and is on the editorial staff of the international art and culture magazine Garage.
She lives in Taos, New Mexico, with her 14-year-old son.
(courtesy of Amazon Author Page)
Website ~ http://www.allegrahuston.com/
Twitter ~ @allegrahuston