Wednesday 4 September 2019

Letting Go by Cat Clarke September Book of the Month

I am a huge fan of author Cat Clarke so when I saw that Barrington Stoke would be publishing and releasing a novella from her, I was eager to get my hands on a copy. Letting Go is a moving, thoughtful and utterly touching YA story.


When Agnes made a promise to her girlfriend Ellie, she thought they would be together forever. One year later, Agnes is keeping that promise and it's put her in a situation she never could have predicted; climbing a desolate mountain, in miserable weather, with Ellie and her new boyfriend Steve. When the weather takes a threatening turn and the sky-high tension between the trio hit its peak, Agnes will have to push herself further than she ever thought possible...

Praise for Cat Clarke!

Letting Go is no ordinary YA story.

It is what I'd describe as a breath of fresh air, which is rare these days when there are so many books being released every day.

This is a coming of age story but a really believable one, a tale that will hopefully resonate with many readers and not necessarily just the younger audience either.

The front cover alone pulled me in. Made me feel hopeful and the scenery (stars in the night sky) gave a sense of freedom.

How far should you go to keep a promise?

Before I could even get my hands on the book, which I was really desperate to read, my eldest daughter snapped it up so I have her thoughts ready to share with you:

Letting Go is a beautifully touching book about Agnes' journey not just up a mountain but to reclaim her life. Though the story isn't the longest in the world, it held my attention every second it was in my hand and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The first thing I liked about Letting Go is a small detail but one I appreciate. The fast that Ellie and Agnes being LGBTQ+ isn't pushed into the an unnecessary spotlight, the author treats them like any other couple unlike other stories that would capitalise on this detail somehow.

Secondly, the realistic representation of emotions is clear throughout and makes the book feel more alive. Every time Agnes was sad, scared, happy etc. I felt every moment with her. Even in the dim atmosphere of a stormy mountain, the way her feelings are presented grabs the focus of the reader without being over-described or exaggerated. This provides more opportunities for the reader to relate and share in her struggle as the story goes on.

Lastly (this is probably my favourite part), the end of Letting Go. Up until the last moments I was convinced Ellie and Agnes were getting back together and being a happy couple again despite what the title might have us assume. It subverted my expectations in a very good way because Agnes didn't follow the common romance traits expected. She did the healthy thing and moved on. This actually shows we shouldn't cling on and hope that someone still loves you instead move forward, not letting somebody else get in the way of you living your life. 

In conclusion, this is an amazing story that dodges stereotypes and is a real pleasure to read. I'd recommend this to romance lovers of 12 and above and anyone who simply loves a bit of suspense. All in all, this is a great book that has stuck out among others and it's one I won't forget easily.
Letting Go is an exceptional novella as it manages to build the intensity and emotion that a normal novel can do yet it's more like a third of the size of a general story.

To say I was impressed would be an understatement. It was a privilege to read and that's why I have chosen it to be my book of the month!


  1. This review makes me want to read this one. I think it might help me personally right now too. Love the cover! #ReadWithMe

  2. This sounds like a really good book for teens, and I love reading your daughter's reviews! #readwithme

  3. I don't read YA, but your daughter's review certainly sells this book #readwithme

  4. This sounds good. I don't read YA myself, but this might be one for me to look out for for my daughter.


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