One Moment, One Morning

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One Moment, One Morning , Sarah Rayner, book reviewIt was just another day on the 7.44 from Brighton to London, when suddenly a man is taken ill and dies. One Moment, One Morning by Sarah Rayner is a novel about how one moment is all it takes to change lives.

Karen loses her husband, Simon. Anna, her best friend, loses a valued friend and must support Karen. Lou was sitting near Simon and meets Anna when they share a taxi from the train, before Anna knows who has passed away. All three women’s lives are changed by this tragedy.

One Moment, One Morning is a very down to earth novel. The characters deal with real life around the tragedy they are coming to terms with, and on the whole they have believable lives. Although it happen’s at the start of the novel, Simon’s death is truly upsetting as we see its effects through the eyes of those who loved him.

I found One Moment, One Morning a very moving novel, and the main reason for this was that it made me think. It made me consider how I would cope with a loss like this; I found myself thinking of loved ones who have passed away, and it brought home to me that life can be changed in an instant. We should enjoy and treasure the time we have with those we love.

The different characters in One Moment, One Morning added variety to the story, and gave it a breadth it wouldn’t have if they were all from the same walk of life. Karen is a highly organized mum, Anna is a glamorous writer in a far from perfect relationship, and Lou is slightly more unconventional. These different lives complement each other and mean that in addition to main story of the grief over Simon’s death, the smaller side stories are all quite different.

Rayner’s writing is perhaps not something you could describe as special, but it is effective. She writes well, and tends to stick to the everyday subjects rather than drifting off into passages on the unfairness of life. Karen’s breakdown moments come over the difficulty of helping her children to understand their daddy has gone forever, rather than have her sitting around being melancholy and pondering the meaning of life. The normality of what Karen has to deal with (and Anna and Lou to a lesser extent) is why the story is so moving; we can all identify with it, it could happen to anyone.

Another testament to the effectiveness of Rayner’s writing is that since I finished the novel, I have thought of it occasionally, and I feel like the characters are real people. I wonder how Karen is coping now, and I have to remind myself that she is a character in a novel.

One Moment, One Morning is a truly wonderful read. A simple story, told very effectively, and one which will stay with you and make you think. It is not Sarah Rayner’s first novel, but it seems to have been her most successful so far. She has another novel out in March 2012, The Two Week Wait, which looks like it may also feature the character Lou.


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One Moment, One Morning
by Sarah Rayner

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Written by eilidhcatriona
eilidhcatriona

A Scottish lass in her late twenties living in London. A prolific reader always interested in something new.

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