Leah's Reviews > The Book of Tomorrow

The Book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern
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Nov 14, 09

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Tamara Goodwin has always had anything and everything she’s ever wanted in life. At 16, you could say she’s rather spoilt. Not only is she a spoilt brat but she’s also incredibly ungrateful and doesn’t seem to respect her parents. Until one day, her dad kills himself. It turns out Tamara and her mother are so much in debt that their fabulous house has had to be reposessed. Tamara and her mother move down to Kilsaney to stay with Tamara’s Aunt Rosaleen and Uncle Arthur. Whilst there Tamara happens upon a locked book in a travelling library. When the book is finally opened, Tamara is shocked. It seems to be fore-telling what will happen tomorrow…

I am a huge Cecelia Ahern fan and I count PS, I Love You as one of my favourite books ever. Her books are incredibly well written and each book has their own magic sparkle. As I mentioned in my When Rainbows End review, Cecelia is a fairytale author for grown-ups. The Book of Tomorrow does not disappoint. First off I have to mention the stunning cover. It’s presented in hardback and is purple and gold. The gold shimmers in the light and the cover looks like an actual book. It’s not a chick-lit-type cover it’s actually like a real proper book. Upon opening the hardback the back of the hardback page as well as the page next to it is gold and looks incredibly nice. The back of the book is the same. Mine also has a diary-style ribbon peeking out that you can put in as a bookmark. It’s incredibly well-presented and is a huge shoo-in for Book Cover of the Year!

Now onto the book itself. The first paragraph tells us that to read this story we have to suspend belief. Easy peasy for me. I want to be swept away into Cecelia’s magical world. Tamara herself says that if it wasn’t happening to her there is no way she’d believe it. I believe her; she isn’t the type. From then on the book is told from Tamara’s point-of-view, which is what makes the story, as it gives us a great insight into how Tamara’s life has changed. I love the whole focal point of the book being about a magical diary that can tell you what’s supposed to happen tomorrow. I thought it was an incredible storyline for Cecelia to take and I thought she worked it perfectly. It takes a while to get to the actual diary but believe me, I was soon hooked. I couldn’t wait to find out what the diary had in store for Tamara and I couldn’t wait to see how she would alter the day if she felt like it.

As I said, it takes a while to get to the book, around 100 pages or so. Maybe less. But first we learn about how Tamara has ended up in a gatehouse next to Kilsaney Castle. It’s interesting and really builds everything up for when she eventually finds this fabulous book. The best thing for me, before the discovery of the book, was Sister Ignacious entering the fray. I thought she was a fantastic addition to the book. That’s what got me hooked as I knew there was something about her that she wasn’t telling Tamara, as we find out later on in the book.

At first, and for a long while after, Tamara comes across as an incredibly selfish and incredibly ungrateful brat. For me, though, that adds to her charm. I’m a teenager myself so can sort of relate (except I don’t have millions of pounds like Tamara did!). You’re always reading how spoilt and selfish children are when they’ve had everything handed to them on a plate so I could get into the mind of Tamara and understand why she was the way she was. Yes it was her decision to act like that but having everything from her parents didn’t exactly help the cause. The thing for me though is Tamara acknowledged she was a bit of a cow and since she’s only 16 I liked that. She acted the way she did because she knew she was doing it – it was purposeful. She does eventually come around to the life she now has to live but she still has her prickly moments. I thought Cecelia tapped into the mind of a 16-year-old well and I loved Tamara. I didn’t expect to, but I did.

There are other characters in the book, of course, and as I’ve said I loved Sister Ignacious. I liked how easily she and Tamara spoke and I also liked the fact she didn’t judge Tamara or mind when Tamara was a bit prickly. She took it in her stride. For a nun, she seemed rather relaxed and I liked her for it. Tamara’s mother is another main character in the book although for the most part she’s comatose in her bedroom and hardly spoke a word. Tamara’s Aunt Rosaleen and Uncle Arthur play a huge part in the book – bigger than you’ll ever think – and I admit I hadn’t a clue what was coming. I didn’t really like Rosaleen I thought she was far too nosey (says me, who is also incredibly nosey) but I liked Arthur and thought he had hidden depths. As it turned out they both had hidden depths and that plot twist surprised me. There are a few other minor characters including a secret person living in the bungalow attached to the gateway where Tamara and co. are staying. Rosaleen insists it’s her mother but Tamara thinks differently. There’s also Marcus, he of the travelling library, who I thought was going to be a bigger character than he was. Finally there’s Weseley, a friend Tamara makes whilst in Kilsaney. I liked him and thought it was nice Tamara finally had a friend!

One of the other major parts of the book was not a character but a castle. So much happens at Kilsaney Castle, a lot of which is unravelled as the book goes on, and it sound like a magnificent building. The descriptions of Kilsaney Castle are excellent and I was right there with Tamara, exploring the “tree towns”, exploring the Castle and wandering the grounds. Cecelia is great at describing the surroundings her books are set in and she did another great job here. I could imagine where the castle was located and could easily imagine being there with Tamara which isn’t something I can usually do but Cecelia just describes it so well I couldn’t help but imagine being there.

There are a few other storylines floating around the book, particularly with how secretive Rosaleen seems and just how comatose Jennifer (Tamara’s mother) is. All is unravelled in time leading to a rather explosive conclusion. I had an inkling about some of the things revealed but definitely not about the biggest revelation that comes. Believe me, it’ll blow your socks off. As well as putting everything into perspective. It all slots into place rather nicely, I must say.

Cecelia Ahern really is a fantastic writer and The Book of Tomorrow is on par with PS, I Love You in terms of just how great it is. You may have to suspend your beliefs to read the book but believe me, it will be worth it.
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