I was gifted an ebook of Postscript by the publisher via Netgalley. The decision to read was my own and this review forms my honest opinion.
It’s been seven years since Holly Kennedy’s husband died six since she read his final letter, urging Holly to find the courage to forge a new life.
She s proud of all the ways in which she has grown and evolved. But when a group inspired by Gerry’s letters, calling themselves the PS, I Love You Club, approaches Holly asking for help, she finds herself drawn back into a world that she worked so hard to leave behind.
Reluctantly, Holly begins a relationship with the club, even as their friendship threatens to destroy the peace she believes she has achieved. As each of these people calls upon Holly to help them leave something meaningful behind for their loved ones, Holly will embark on a remarkable journey one that will challenge her to ask whether embracing the future means betraying the past, and what it means to love someone forever
I was so excited when it was announced that PS, I Love You would have a sequel. It was a book I read back in my early twenties and, having had only a steady stream of bonehead boyfriends to my name at that time, I fell in love with Holly, Gerry and their tragic story. It was heartbreaking and hopeful all at the same time, and it was placed firmly on my forever shelf.
It had been some years since I’d read it when I picked this up, and as I have the memory of a goldfish who has been in the ring a dozen too many times, I could only really remember the salient points – in hindsight, I wish I had gone back and read the PS, I Love You first.
Postscript picks up several years after the death of Gerry. Holly is in a new relationship and she has moved on with her life. Until one day, when she partakes in a podcast in which she talks about Gerry’s letters and she suddenly finds herself in a difficult situation with a group, inspired by her story, called the PS, I Love You Club.
Plot wise, I have to say – I was a tad disappointed initially. It did feel a bit of a stretch, and I was concerned that it was a sequel for sequels sake, rather than anything fresh and new. I did eventually settle into it however, and I loved it, most particularly the new characters and the new interactions each character had with Holly.
Early on in the novel, I really thought it was going to be a duffer. Holly irritated me, her family irritated me, her new partner, Gabriel irritated me. I really thought I was going to have to put it down. But then Holly met the PS, I Love You Club, something shifted and I fell in love with it. I enjoy Cecelia Ahern’s writing style, having read several of her novels and, most recently her collection of short stories, Roar and once I’d nestled into this, I was once again transported.
The best character award (if there was such a thing) goes to Ginika and by extension, her daughter Jewel. Her story became the heart of the story and the one that I became the most emotionally involved with. Although there was an air of predictability about where the story would lead, I didn’t care because she was so incredible; spiky with an iron will, and yet warm and witty too.
I think a lot of the struggle for me with Holly and Gabriel was that it was rather a lot to ask of a reader so invested in the love story between Holly and Gerry, to suddenly be Team Gabriel, especially when he, in my view, doesn’t come over that well and when the scenes between them aren’t necessarily that positive. I think the story needed for Holly to be in a relationship to show how her life has changed, but yet this particular relationship didn’t feel to mirror the maturity and growth Holly claimed to possess since Gerry’s death.
As poignant as the plot is, there is a significant shift in tone from PS, I Love You. It dealt with overcoming raw grief and finding a way forward. Postscript is about moving on, seeking closure and personal growth. I certainly found myself mulling over aspects of grief that I hadn’t considered before. Despite my early misgivings and my issues with Holly and Gabriel, I was very soon invested, and found Postscript to be a wonderfully evocative read.