THE GIRL BEFORE meets THEN SHE WAS GONE - the brilliant new novel from Clare Empson
'A beautifully told stroy about the raw pain and ecstasy of motherhood. I loved it.' Jane Corry
'I adored this powerful, emotive and sensitively written story about love and loss/' Louise Jensen
'Haunting and heart-rending ... a beautifully told story' Victoria Selman
'Who am I? Why am I here? Why did my mother give me away?'
On the surface, Luke and his girlfriend Hannah seem to have a perfect life. He's an A&R man, she's an arts correspondent and they are devoted to their new-born son Samuel.
But beneath the gloss Luke has always felt like an outsider. So when he finds his birth mother Alice, the instant connection with her is a little like falling in love.
When Hannah goes back to work, Luke asks Alice to look after their son. But Alice - fuelled with grief from when her baby was taken from her 27 years ago - starts to fall in love with Samuel. And Luke won't settle for his mother pushing him aside once again...
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Why real readers love this emotionally gripping story by the author of HIM:
'Read it, read it, read it. One of my books of the year, without a doubt.' Goodreads reviewer
'Beautiful, haunting, emotional, and totally addictive.' Goodreads reviewer
'A realistic, character driven, highly-emotional and addictive read.' Goodreads reviewer
'Be warned: this novel will take over your life while you are reading it.' Goodreads reviewer
I lost sleep over this. A beautifully told story about the raw pain and ecstasy of motherhood. I loved it. - Jane Corry
Oh I loved this! Clare Empson is now one of my favourite storytellers. Loved her debut so much, and this is just as good! - Amanda Reynolds
It's beautifully written, but also so full of heart and emotion. It's right in that sweet spot of having the grip of a thriller but the emotional depth of a tragic love story. A heart-wrenching novel about families and love that will stay with me for a very long time. - Francesca Jakobi
Clare Empson creates the most glamorous worlds. Even in the sympathetic exploration of despair and depression, her worlds are appealing and sophisticated. I read this in one sitting. - Rachael Blok
It's heartbreakingly brilliant, definitely one of my favourite books so far this year. - Louise Voss
Clare is a journalist with a background in national newspapers - small business editor, finance correspondent and fashion at the Mail on Sunday and the Daily Express, freelance for The Sunday Telegraph, The Sunday Times, the Evening Standard and Tatler amongst others. She currently works as editor/founder of experiential lifestyle website www.countrycalling.co.uk.