Everyone knows that in London no one talks to one another on the train – even if you travel together every day. But when flashy futures trader Piers chokes on a grape during the morning trip to Waterloo, the rule breaks down and a posse of commuters become friends.
They are led by the colourful magazine therapist (not agony aunt) Iona, who travels everywhere with her dog Lulu and still loves her job despite her colleagues thinking she’s past it.
Nurse Sanjay has been building up the courage to speak to fellow commuter Emmie, student Martha is finding school tough and shy David is the sort of person no one remembers.
Clare Pooley has written another treat of a story that highlights the importance of connection. If you are after a joyous and uplifting read, then this is it.
Julian used to live a very flamboyant and colourful life as an artist but now his wife is gone, he is rather depressed and lonely. He confesses the truth about his life in a green notebook entitled The Authenticity Project and then leaves it in a cafe, encouraging others to do the same. After cafe owner Monica writes about her desire to be loved and a mother, the notebook wings its way to Thailand with city trader Hazard, whose life has imploded because of addictions.
And so it is passed from character to character, creating a terrifically uplifting, heart-warming and memorable read about honesty, community and connection. I enjoyed reading about all the characters and found the writing style engaging. Definitely a must-read for 2020.