When I first picked up this book and looked at the listing of characters I thought I would never remember them all and would have to keep flicking back to see who they were but how wrong I was – I became engaged with each and every one of them. This is such a totally wonderful novel and now I can’t wait to read the other two and see what happens with the lives of these people I have gotten to know.
Joanna, you have written such an absorbing novel that is like every soap opera rolled into one – the lives, loves, hates, joy, grief – every single emotion is catered to and I followed every relationship with bated breath. I loved the fact that the book was written in the 60s era – boy, it took me straight back to when I was 14 onwards with the music, fashion and way of life.
The book is so well written that you get to know each character up close and personal and you feel all of their pain and joy as the story unfolds. Some of the characters I wanted to shake and tell them to ‘wake up’ and see what they were doing. Others I felt all the emotion of what was going on in their lives at that time.
Mel, Ella’s mother, I wanted to strangle – what a nasty vindictive woman and I think I can see where her life is going. The men in Ella’s life…..well, what can I say? I can remember going through the same sort of relationships when I was Ella’s age but you just hope and pray that she ends up with the right person.
Thank you Joanna for writing such a wonderful book and giving us all many hours of total enjoyment and am so looking forward to the next two books.
I can highly recommend this read if you like saga-type novels that run the full range of every emotion, with a story that keeps you gripped and leaves you wanting to grab the next in the series. BR Oct 2012 5* Amazon Review
First off I have to admit I’m a 60s junkie. I love the British TV programs Heartbeat and The Royal so the fact that Joanna Lambert’s book takes me back there was a bonus.
When Tomorrow Comes follows Ella Kendrick on her rollercoaster journey from being a young girl to a young woman.
Joanna paints her scenery vividly. The farm where Ella lives with her grandparents in the west of England is brought to life from the old farmhouse to the other buildings on the property. I could see the rural village of Meridan Cross and the nearby town of Abbotsbridge as clearly as if I was standing in the middle of them.
The characters are complex, each with their own problems to deal with. Ella’s grandmother, a loving woman but one who has never come to terms with the fact her daughter walked out. Ella’s mother is a materialist social climber who likes to control everything, including Ella’s career path and who she will marry.
The 60s era was one of change. Fashions went from longer skirts to micro-minis that barely covered your bum. Colours were bright and hair was long, especially on the guys. When titles of songs by the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, and other bands from back then were mentioned, I remembered them and started humming along. Joanna captured that time wonderfully.
Overall, it was a wonderful read and I’m looking forward to the next two installments of the Behind Blue Eyes trilogy MK July 2011 5* Amazon Review
Although the synopsis starts from 1967, the story begins in a `world’ that is the foundation and sets the scene, which starts in 1965. Ella is sixteen and living in the village Meridan Cross. Her father died a few years ago, her mother disappeared, so she is being lovingly brought up by her maternal grandparents on their farm.
We get to experience village life, getting to know all the characters who inhabit the village ……………. and all the gossip. For the youngsters, their social lives revolve around the farming community ie Young Farmer’s Midsummer Barn Dance. We become involved in watching Ella’s relationship with Niall develop. Niall, who is the charismatic older boy and has all the females flirting with him. There is a tragedy at the train station in Abbotsbridge, a wedding to attend and then Ella moves out to live with her mother Mel and step-father Liam.
The story then involves us in Ella’s life in Abbotsbridge but we also look back to what is happening in the village. Ella soon faces the truth of how Mel has changed everything about her life. She accepts college and is determined to be successful. Emotions become involved through a betrayal and we really get to see the strength of Ella’s character as her life unwinds in the town.
Mel really is ambitious for her daughter but not in a `wanting the best’ for Ella …………… but what she wants for herself, to enhance her own reputation. For all her high and mighty ways she is not liked in Abbotsbridge. She is likened to Cruella de Ville by Ella’s friend Rachel ………… which is very apt! I really couldn’t find any redeeming features in her personality. Ella’s relationship with Mel is offset by Liam, who is something of an ally for her. A perfect balance in their household. I found myself feeling really sorry for Liam having had to live with Mel for all those years and could see how escaping off to his study to work was a form of relief!
All the characters are totally believable and have their own problems to deal with, their own journeys to come to terms with. The scenes are written in such a way that it was so easy to image I was actually there, taking part.
There are references to the fashions of the day – ie clothes, songs, pre-decimalisation and cars. The huge difference I found is, of course, no mobile phones! The teenagers have no privacy and parents control who they speak to and when. So different in today’s world!
The world of both village and city that the author creates in the first of this trilogy was all absorbing for me. I can’t wait to read the second movement to find out where we will journey to next! SZ July 2011 4* Amazon Review
What a wonderful and absorbing story!
Set in the 1960s it captured the time perfectly, bringing back memories of the fashions, music and how the world was exciting and changing so much for young people. The characters were so real, and although there were many of them and I had wondered if it would be confusing,that was not the case, as each one was believable and you cared about them. It is surely the sign of a good book that you find yourself constantly thinking about Ella, Andy, Matt and their families and friends and wonder where the story is going to take you.I sometimes found I almost couldn’t read on as the story unfolded and took the characters in a different direction to where I wanted them to be. The characters had great depth and warmth and Joanna writes with a real understanding, portraying the darker side of human nature with characters such as Mel, Ella’s mother, who schemed to promote her own interests even above those of her children.
I really loved this book and felt sad to have finished it……so I had to read on and have now finished the second book in the trilogy Love Lies and Promises. Another brilliant book I certainly was not disappointed. I feel I really know and love the characters and care about them.
The third book is now lined up.Well done Joanna! KH Feb 2014 5* Amazon Review