You, Me & The Sea – Elizabeth Haynes

Compelling, moving and teeming with feral desire: Elizabeth Haynes’s new novel is an intoxicating story of love and redemption, set on a wild and windswept Scottish island.

Rachel is at crisis point. A series of disastrous decisions has left her with no job, no home, and no faith in herself. But an unexpected job offer takes her to a remote Scottish island, and it feels like a chance to recover and mend her battered self-esteem.

The island’s other inhabitants are less than welcoming. Fraser Sutherland is a taciturn loner who is not happy about sharing his lighthouse – or his precious coffee beans – and Lefty, his unofficial assistant, is a scrawny, scared lad who isn’t supposed to be there at all.

Homesick and out of her depth, Rachel is sure she’s made another huge mistake. But, as spring turns to summer, the wild beauty of the island begins to captivate her soul.

Elizabeth Haynes worked for many years as a police intelligence analyst. Her debut novel, Into the Darkest Corner, won Amazon’s Book of the Year in 2011 and Amazon’s Rising Star Award for debut novels.

Elizabeth grew up in Sussex and studied English, German and Art History at Leicester University. She now lives in North Norfolk. Elizabeth is a regular participant in, and a Municipal Liaison for, National Novel Writing Month – Nanowrimo – an annual challenge to write 50,000 words in the month of November.

My Review:

Firstly, I need to admit that Elizabeth Haynes’ is one of my favourite authors and her debut book Into The Darkest Corner remains one of my all time favourite books and THE book that changed my reading habits from chick-lit to dark, psychological thrillers.

Elizabeth’s first 6 books are all dark thrillers either in the police procedural genre or standalone psychological thrillers so when I received a book in the post from her in 2018 called The Murder of Harriet Monkton, a historical fiction book I was surprised and slightly apprehensive because it was such a change from her previous books, but it was absolutely INCREDIBLE and proved that Ms Haynes is a woman of many talents!

You can now imagine my reaction to getting a book posted to me in November 2020 from Elizabeth Haynes, especially as once again it was a genre so removed from her previous books that I had no idea what to expect.

You, Me & The Sea which is being published in February 2021 is a love story set on an isolated, windswept island in Scotland and whilst there are two main characters, Fraser and Rachel, the Isle of Must is such an integral part of the story that it becomes the third character – living, breathing and real in my mind.

This is the tale of two people, one hiding from his past and one running from hers. Fraser is a recluse, a gruff, intimidating mammoth of a man living on the island in the lighthouse. He doesn’t seem to like people and prefers to be left alone. Rachel is running away from her past and when she is offered the opportunity to work on an isolated island away from everyone she jumps at the chance until she finds out she has to live with Fraser.

I don’t normally read love stories, romance or books without dead bodies, so this was completely out of my comfort zone, but within the first few chapters I was so intrigued and captivated by the characters and the Isle of Must that I became totally immersed in the story.

The setting of this remote and often hostile environment intensifies the raw emotions and attraction between Fraser and Rachel and I thoroughly enjoyed watching their relationship develop.

So, grab a copy and immerse yourself in this windswept tale of love.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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