16.9.14

BOOK REVIEW: If I Knew You Were Going To Be This Beautiful I Never Would Have Let You Go by Judy Chicurel

If I Knew You Were Going To Be This Beautiful I Never Would Have Let You Go is set on a fictionalised Long Island in the summer of 1972 in a close-knit working class community whose young men have been hard hit by the Vietnam war, and whose young women, including narrator Katie, face challenging decisions about the future.

Publisher: Tinder Press
Pages: 272 
Date: 30th October 2014

If I Knew is a stunning debut from Judy Chicurel. Set in a Long Island community in the summer of 1972, the book follows Katie who has just finished school. It is a real mix of the possibilities of the future ahead mirrored with the young men returning from Vietnam to the small-knit town. They  have seen the future and it is terrifying. Katie likes Luke who has just returned from the war; she liked him before he went but will she be able to fully understand the person he has become?
The aspect of the book that stood out the most to me was the dialogue; it was so well written, I felt like I was eaves-dropping on conversations. Judy Chicurel brings her characters to life through the dialogue; it feels effortless and natura
l.
The book very much captured the feeling of change that took place at the time. Elephant Beach is a small community and I felt that it was used almost to embody the naivety of some people and the insular way in which they viewed the world.
Judy Chicurel is extremely talented, this is an accomplished debut and one that I would highly recommend.

Many thanks to Georgina for sending me copy of this book to review, If I Knew You Were Going To Be This Beautiful I Never Would Have Let You Go is published on 30th October by Tinder Press.  

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