Tuesday, 9 September 2014

...but I Love you - book review!

...but I love you, is a novel by Sinead Gillespie, published in 2013 by Indigo Dreams Publishing.
I was given a review copy of this book a couple of weeks ago and immediately embarked upon the read. I'd just finished my holiday reads and was in need of a new challenge.
....but I love you certainly provided the challenge I needed!! The novel is a story of mixed messages, misread signs and the subtle conditionality of love. At first I was a little unsure where the story was going. I was a tad perplexed with the vivid lesbian sex descriptions. But I had to keep reading. And reading. And when the book ended I was disappointed....not with how it ended, but because I wanted it to go on!
The novel centres around Kate and Helena's lives, both before and after they meet and form a relationship. Kate escapes her Christian parents and after counselling she feels ready to go out into the world and experience 'the scene' of gay life! It is in fact her counsellor Helena that Kate fancies, but Helena is straight...isn't she?
After a chance meeting outside a nightclub the pair agree to meet again and Helena becomes baffled with her feelings. The next meeting leads to more.
Kate's parents blame Helena for making their daughter gay, and their Christian beliefs are scattered. Helena questions her identity and suffers prejudices which eventually cost her, her job.  Kate stands up to her parents and explains that she was indeed born this way and it has nothing to do with Helena's guidance or counselling. Helena encounters the worst possible fate with a man, and is forced to fight for her love with Kate. Fortunately the two win their fight, but they encounter so much more along the way.
Endearment, affirmation and loyalty or imposition manipulation and threat. Straight guys in a night club; dodgy ex's; smitten best mates; lesbian lovers. In a world of I love you's there is always a 'but'. Throughout this novel you will find many a 'but'. 'But' love triumphs in the end and many lessons are learned.
Throughout this read I was forced to question my own identity. Not so much myself but a general sense of how I view others. Do I really accept my gay friends for who they are? Do I allow my own Christian beliefs to shadow my judgements? Thankfully I was able to be honest and say that my gay friends are equal to my straight friends. Their sexuality doesn't threaten or trouble me. My Christian views tell me that it's right to accept people for who they are and I am not worthy to judge another on their sexual orientation. This book will challenge every reader to look at themselves and reassess how they judge people. It will challenge them to think seriously about their own persona.
Fortunately I believe very strongly in equal rights for everyone. However, not everyone agrees with me. And because of these prejudices which still exist many people are forced to hide their true selves or live a life of abuse from others, and experience many dire consequences.
...but I love you is an easily read book. It's an extremely well written book. It's a book one doesn't want to end. And most importantly it's a book with many messages and lessons.




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