Book Review: Life is Yours by Abigail Yardimci

I am not normally one to read women’s fiction, but I was intrigued when Life is Yours crossed my review desk. So, I gave it a go and was pleasantly surprised.

1. Thoughts on the plot

This book follows Jess as she tells her story of overcoming heartbreak. She and her fiance broke up after seven years of being together, and after that nothing seemed to quite go right with work or her emotions. But she worked and pushed through it to overcome the pain.

In general, I thought the plot was good. A person learning to continue on through grief and pain is a good topic because it’s so relatable. However, I will say that some of the “learning points” that were sprinkled throughout the book, where Jess made significant progress or changed her mental picture dramatically, were very obvious, almost to the point of taking me out of the story. It felt like a textbook for thinking positive rather than a fictional story, which is fine if this were a guidebook, but feels a bit much for a fictionalised depiction of events.

2. Thoughts on the characters

I liked the characters in this book. I think they felt very real, perhaps because they were going through such real circumstances. I think that Jess was really the primary focus, and so a lot of the secondary characters didn’t have quite as much depth or development, but as this was a first person pov story, and the events really revolved around her, that is perfectly fine. I didn’t feel like I was missing a whole lot. 

I will say that Jack didn’t feel like a great person from the beginning, just because of the way that Jess was thinking about him and orienting her life around him. I know that hindsight, and being outside of the relationship can grant clarity, but I really didn’t get why she was so desperate to get back with him, as he seemed very controlling.

3. Favourite part

Taking back the pendants. Can say no more because of spoilers.

4. Critique

My main critique for this book is what I mentioned in section one. The lessons felt very forced, very much straight out of a textbook, and almost unnatural in terms of Jess’ character development. Granted, I’m not massively familiar with women’s fiction, so I don’t know if this is normal, but it really took me out of the story.

Overall, I would say that Life is Yours was a good book about overcoming heartbreak and grief, and living life to the fullest.