Book Review: Days of Wonder by @keefstuart @LittleBrownUK


Magical, heartbreaking, beautiful - Days of Wonder reminds us that stories have the power to save lives.

Tom, single father to Hannah, is the manager of a tiny local theatre. On the same day each year, he and its colourful cast of part-time actors have staged a fantastical production just for his little girl, a moment of magic to make her childhood unforgettable.

But there is another reason behind these annual shows: the very first production followed Hannah's diagnosis with a heart condition that both of them know will end her life early. And now, with Hannah a funny, tough girl of fifteen on the brink of adulthood, that time is coming.

With the theatre under threat of closure, Hannah and Tom have more than one fight on their hands to stop the stories ending. But maybe, just maybe, one final day of magic might just save them both.

A tale about growing up, the beauty of a special bond between father and daughter, and finding magic in everyday life, Days of Wonder is the most moving novel you'll read all year.

Days of Wonder Book Review:

I really loved A Boy Made of Blocks. It was such a touching story so I was delighted when Little Brown asked me to take part in the blog tour for Days of Wonder.

I found A Boy Made of Blocks to be a slow burner. It was clear the author really wanted the reader to get to know his characters so I was not surprised to see that Days of Wonder followed the same path. Sometimes it's really nice to read a book that's about the characters rather than just the pace of the plot. 

The story is told from two viewpoints - Tom the father and Hannah the daughter who suffers from a heart condition. As someone with a chronic illness, I could really relate to Hannah and her being mature beyond her years. It's a common trait among people who are ill and it was a nice addition to her character. It shows the level of research the author did into children who suffer from illness from a young age. 

Even though Days of Wonder deals with harrowing issues, it's not all doom and gloom. The sense of community the reader feels from everyone involved with the theater is endearing. Even though there are a lot of characters in the book each one brings something unique to the table. Margaret was my personal favorite, and I'm sure you'll find yours among the group while reading. 

Days of Wonder was, at times a fun read, but that didn't take away from how emotional it was. Have a pack of tissues handy! I  loved that even though we know that Hannah's life could end at any moment she knows she has to use the time she has and develop as a person. Her dad knew that he had to learn to let go and let her grow up as an individual, not just as a girl with a heart problem. 

I was genuinely sad when I turned the last page and had to leave these wonderful characters behind. Days of Wonder is sure to be one of my top reads of 2018. 


★ ★ ★ ★ ★

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