When Frank's wife, Maggie, is taken into hospital in a coma, there's one simple thing he's required to do - talk to her. But it's not quite so simple for Frank, as he and Maggie haven't spoken a single word to one another in six months, despite sharing the same bed.
Desperate not to lose Maggie, Frank tentatively begins to share their story together and crucially explain his silence. It's a stubbornly one-way conversation until Frank discovers a notebook written by Maggie for him, testifying to her own side of the story.
Abbie Greaves' debut is an assured examination of a couple's relationship. Although the vehicle of a protagonist being in a coma has been used before, the way into this situation and the narrative around it felt engaging and interesting. However, I didn't particularly warm to Maggie, even when we hear her own words, and I felt that the centrepiece of the story surrounding the event that defined Maggie and Frank's current relationship and their silence was sadly a little underdeveloped.
Having said that, I enjoyed the angle and concept of the novel and will be keen to see more from this author in the future. (JC)