Should We Fall Behind is book three to be published by indie publisher Bluemoose Books in 2020, the year of only publishing women. Kevin and his team are responsible for introducing me to some fabulous books which I inevitably want to shout about and push into the hands of willing readers; I’m always delighted to read a book they have decided to publish. This book was no exception.
Sometimes, life does not work out the way we’d hoped or dreamed. Sometimes we are thrown a curve ball and knocked off course. Sometimes we loose our way, and fall behind. This novel takes a handful of characters who fit into these categories, and brings them together.
Shifnal Road is multi-cultural and vibrant area of the city, yet many of the inhabitants keep to themselves and neighbours barely exchange pleasantries. Jimmy, Rayya, Ebele, Tuli and Nikos are all living or working on the same street, yet their lives rarely intersect. They are all seemingly unconnected, from different places and cultures, and have little in common. When Jimmy turns up in the area in search of Betwa, he is hopeful that he will find his missing friend. His appearance is not, however, welcomed by everyone. His presence unintentionally and unwittingly brings about change in the lives of the others.
I loved this book and was so moved by it – the characters are beautifully depicted and wonderfully flawed, the prose is crystal sharp and it is bursting with humanity. I loved the journey Sharon Duggal took me on, slowing revealing the back stories of the characters to show how they had fallen behind. I loved seeing how their lives began to cross, how they viewed each other, and I loved the sense of hope that comes into the story in the form of Daban, a character who is common to the lives of the other 4 adult characters.
I can’t recommend this enough! You can order it direct from Bluemoose, or through the usual online or physical book shops. Published 22nd October, but you can pre-order it now.
Thanks for reading,