From the author of the modern classic The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets comes a feel-good novel about hope, love, and the powerful bond between sisters.
It’s 1990. The Happy Mondays are in the charts, a fifteen-year-old called Kate Moss is on the cover of the Face magazine, and Julia Roberts wears thigh-boots for the poster of a new movie called Pretty Woman.
February Kingdom is nineteen years old when she is knocked sideways by family tragedy. Then one evening in May, she finds an escaped canary in her kitchen and it sparks a glimmer of hope in her. With the help of the bird called Yellow, Feb starts to feel her way out of her own private darkness, just as her aunt embarks on a passionate and all-consuming affair with a married American drama teacher.
THIS COULD BE EVERYTHING is a coming-of-age story with its roots under the pavements of a pre-Richard-Curtis-era Notting Hill that has all but vanished. It’s about what happens when you start looking after something more important than you, and the hope a yellow bird can bring . .
Eva Rice has written 5 novels and is the author of the Sunday Times bestseller The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets – a post-war coming-of-age story that was runner-up in the 2006 Richard and Judy Book of the Year. It is currently being developed by Fudge Park (creators of The Inbetweeners) and Moonage Pictures (Pursuit of Love) as a major new TV series.
Eva has toured with bands since her early twenties. She has written the music and lyrics for Harriet a musical based on an early Jilly Cooper novel due to open in 2023. She has a geek-like fascination with pop music, and her party trick is recalling chart positions.
Follow her on twitter @EvaRiceAuthor.
My thoughts: I really felt for February, and not just because that’s a horrible name. She’s lost her parents and then her twin sister Diana, she’s drowning in grief and guilt, and thisclose to giving up completely. She’s got a place at a university in Texas, where she lived as a child, but doesn’t think she can go. The agoraphobia that’s engulfed her since Diana’s death in a car crash makes it hard to leave the house, so she doesn’t. Her aunt and uncle are kind and try to understand, but they’ve got issues of their own.
A canary finds his way into the kitchen, which leads to a boy called Theo, a musician who goes by Plato, finally leaving the house and realising she might just be able to survive after all.
Theres a luminescent quality to the writing, maybe it’s nostalgia, I was a kid in the 90s, maybe it’s the glow of Feb and Theo falling in love, the summer sun glinting off the pavement, the sticky heat we’re all familiar with. I don’t know, but it adds to the vividness of Feb’s slow reawakening.
*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.