Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Since You've Been Gone” as Want to Read:
Since You've Been Gone
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Since You've Been Gone

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  1,618 ratings  ·  323 reviews
How do you learn to love again?

In one tragic moment, Holly Jefferson s life as she knows it changes for ever. Now to the external world, at least she s finally getting back on her feet, running her business, Cake. Then she meets Ciaran Argyll.

His rich and charmed life feels a million miles from her own. However, there s more to Ciaran than the superficial world that surrou
Paperback, 320 pages
Published July 29th 2014 by Harlequin HQN (first published January 1st 2013)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.60  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,618 ratings  ·  323 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Since You've Been Gone
Jul 27, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley-e-book
2.5 Stars

Since You’ve Been Gone
seemed like it would be a sweet romance, unfortunately, I wasn’t blown away.

Holly’s life is basically on autopilot the last two years, since her husband was killed. She still has dreams of her husband’s presence, vivid in longing. Holly owns a bakery and does a steady business, and she’s close to her sister who is about to give birth, but as far as moving on that’s quite another matter. A cake delivery to a posh estate/castle is about to change all of that. This
Ash Wednesday
”Some poor beggars go their whole lives not knowing what love feels like. We might never find it again, but at least we know what to look for.”

I really thought I’ve reached the zenith of my contemporary fiction book slump with this one. That point where there’s no other option but read with that forced jaunt of optimism. Because the alternative is learning a new way to say how disappointed you have been or how it was good.. until it went bad or, my personal favourite, how I liked ce
Lately, I have been choosing light escapist fiction because life has been frantically busy and I'm too tired to concentrate on much else. Since You've Been Gone was part of a 3/$10.00 deal at our local Coles-Indigo bookstore, and was one of two novels that I chose featuring food fiction. I am a sucker for chef/cooking success stories - there is always magic in culinary finesse to me! - and these stories tend to include a romance a two. I'm getting a little long in the tooth for gamine love stori ...more
Jul 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to KatLynne by: Lady Heather
I enjoy well written Women's Fiction, especially one that’s heavy on romance. Anouska Knight delivers a winner as readers journey with Holly Jefferson through the pain and despair of grief to the extraordinary hope of a second chance to love again.

Holly lost her husband in a tragic accident. It’s been two years and she’s survived the heartache by putting all her time and energy into her business, Cakes. She’s managed to fool everyone into believing she’s finally going to be OK, and has become s
Lady Heather
Just finished this wonderful, amazing story.
LOVED the characters, writing, and this author's voice!
What an awesome jem this story turned out to be.
In my opinion, this is probably one of my favorite books this year.
Full review to come;)
Oct 27, 2014 rated it did not like it
I have been gravitating towards books that focus on bakeries or any type of sweet shop. I find these stories charming and sometimes there are bonuses with yummy recipes in the back of the books. Well this book started out ok. I went along reading the book and got about half way when I was like what am I reading. There was no redeeming qualities about any of the characters, the storyline was nothing special and I was not feeling any chemistry between Holly and Ciaran what so ever. They were both ...more
Aug 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book a lot. Was totally in the mood for a book that I didn't want to put down. Was sweet, sexy, romantic. Great weekend read to escape into. Great chick lit romantic book when you are in the mood. Holly is a widow & meets Ciaran who helps her to re enter her life. ...more
Aug 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
Originally on my book blog

Netgalley provided me with this book for an honest review

This book was very cute. It was light and fun. There wasn't much that I didn't like about this book. It had the perfect blend of sadness, happiness, humor, romance, characters, plot, and everything else that makes me like or dislike a book.

I live for tragic stories. The boyfriend has gotten so used to me saying "I loved this book!" and his response is "how many people died?" It's weird. It's probably not normal.
Oct 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Since You've Been Gone
Anouska Knight

So...what it's all about...

Holly is a very young widow who owns a cool cake shop called...Cake. She is still living in her past with dead husband Charlie. She has a very pregnant sister, a good pal at work, a great dog and pretty much nothing else. She is closed off to people, friends and change. Then she meets wealthy playboy Ciaran who tries his best to change her life. And why? Because he loves her even though they have enough rocky patches to make love n
This was a good book to read between Christmas Day and New Year's Day when the craziness attempted to control my life. Holly Jefferson is a young widow whose life was on hold for two years after the death of her husband. Ciarian Argyll is an up and coming businessman who has depth. There were some confusing parts for me: at the beginning I kept thinking that Charlie was alive; for the life of me, I know the setting in Great Britain, but where exactly?

I don't think I would seek out this author ag
Feb 15, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Liked this book, good holiday read. At times a bit predictive, but still enjoyable
"Since you've been gone" was my first book by Anouska Knight and I have been looking forward to the book. The premise sounded great and I am a sucker for those chicklit covers.

The start into the book was a bit bumpy and I had some trouble getting into the story. After a while it got a bit better and I enjoyed the story a little bit more.
Besides a few funny scenes the book had too many flaws for me. One big point is the lack of emotion. I never had the feeling that Holly was still suffering from
Janille n G
Aug 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rom-coms
Since You've Been Gone is a sweet and enjoyable novel that I would highly recommend as a summer read! Truth be told, there's not much to it as the plot is quite contained and the timeframe is quite short. Having said that, I felt really drawn to Holly as a narrator and found her voice to be witty and unique, and I found myself swooning over Ciaran at several points, which is always a must for me from any romantic hero. This wasn't the best chick lit. novel I've ever read by any means, but it was ...more
Aug 30, 2017 rated it did not like it
Bought this from a charity shop. Read the first chapter and thought it seemed truly awful so stopped. Then realised it was a Mills and Boon. Decided to read others' reviews and on the basis of these and the absolutely appalling start, for the first time in a long time, I'm going to not bother to finish a book. My sense from what I did read myself, and from reviews, is that Mills and Boon novels have probably not changed in formula or sexism since I last read one in the 1980s. I'm pretty confiden ...more
Apr 29, 2019 rated it did not like it
This is a DNF for me after 94 pages. I kind of skimmed through the rest, but it played out exactly as I expected. The awkward girl meets the rich guy thins is just overdone. I don't think there was really anything wrong with the book or writing. Romance just isn't a genre I like and I didn't give AF about any of the characters. It felt like a chore to pick up to read so I'm just going to move on. ✌️
Jul 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
I teetered between 3 and 4 stars, finally landing on 4. This was a cute, feel good easy read.
Veronica Nagorny
Jan 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Holly Jefferson is a widowed pastry chef, who owns a cake shop, appropriately named Cake with her friend Jesse. Her husband was a man of the woods, working with his hands between the trees. It has nearly been two years since his passing, but Holly still does not interest herself in the pursuit of new suitors, and rather busies herself with her business. An eccentric and wealthy new customer shows up in her order book, and he takes more from her than just cake and frosting. Without her having muc ...more
Jul 08, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good, fun novel. A little cliché and obvious in places but definitely worth a read.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cindy Roesel
Aug 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
Looking for something sweet, fun and romantic to read? I’ve got just the book for you. SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE (Harlequin/HQH) is written by debut author, Anouska Knight. Look at that cover. Isn’t it delicious? To be completely honest, I saw all those yummy colorful cakes, stared at them for several seconds before running off to get some delish treats which I devoured immediately with a cuppa, while reading SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE. Yes you, Miss Knight are the reason for those extra pounds I just ...more
Sep 27, 2016 rated it liked it
Brief Synopsis:

This book follows Holly, a bakery owner, who has
been grieving the death of her husband for over two
years. The story opens with Holly delivering a cake
in the shape of testicles with a black heel smashing
into them, to Ciaran's father, after a particularly
nasty divorce. (This isn't a spoiler btw. It happens
within the first few pages) Anyways, she delivers
the cake and has to leave abruptly because there's
a rowdy poker game happening and she's not
having it. Before she leaves she briefl
Aug 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Review originally posted 9/1/14 on For What It's Worth

To be perfectly honest, I bought this book because of the cover. Look at the pretty cakes! The protagonist, Holly owns a bakery, appropriately named CAKE, and I love food so I was in!

While there is cake, Since You’ve Been Gone isn’t really about any of that.

What could have been an over the top,cliché, story about a “dowdy” (Holly’s word) widow and an arrogant, millionaire, turned into a truly beautifu
Jul 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance
This book arrived, like a miracle in a brown envelope, from HQN as a reviewer copy. Hello, darling! I haven't been a reviewer for maybe three years, but, who's going to send back a book? Not me.
And even though I'm in the midst of some kind of biker romance marathon, I cracked Since You've Been Gone...

I only stopped reading because I had to sleep last night, and then again today, I had to actually work. But every other second I read.

It seems as if Holly Jefferson will never get over the death of
Apr 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I super loved this book! It is a total Rom-com book, the kind that I absolutely fall for and love. And I found it on a whim, just browsing the shelves! (Love that) It is very much the cheesy set up: he is a seemingly spoiled rich boy wants to deserve the hard working but guarded independent woman. They both have heartache in their past but endeavor to find love - yep I can tell you the premise every time, and I'm a sucker every time! Maybe it's the Scottish brogue that gets me ;)

The only caveat
Barbara Elsborg
A fun, frothy read perfect for the beach or a hot lazy day. The characters are interesting and yes, maybe a little predictable, as was the plot but that didn't spoil my enjoyment. How can anyone be completely original!I picked this up without realising it was Mills and Boon and I wasn't aware of the competition that it won. It was nicely written and kept my interest though funnily enough - I didn't like the sexy bits. They felt unneeded to me as though - haha - this is a chance to put in a bit o ...more
Jun 14, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2014, first-reads
I read an advanced readers' copy won in a Goodreads giveaway, and would like to thank the author and Harlequin Books.

While this book has its quirks, including a kilted parent, it was largely predictable and poorly developed. Reading it required a lot of effort because a lot of scenes simply did not make sense in terms of the actions the characters have chosen to take, and it would be up to the reader to make assumptions.

Furthermore, the main conflict in this novel is the internal one of Holly Je
Aug 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Nothing too special here. The book follows a tried and true plot line as old as time. In this case a lady who owns a cake decorating shop who is recently widowed must struggle to overcome her loss and as she does this she meets a rich man who seems at times to be a jerk. Didn't Jane Austin work with this plot without the widowhood? I don't want to tell the ending but you probably already know it. For romance fans and really no one else. Easy to read but easy to forget.
E. Barrera
Jan 08, 2015 rated it liked it
I have to admit I picked up this book because of the cover and I was further intrigued when I found out it takes place in England. I love accents. This is a light story about loss, grief and new beginnings. It has a mediocre plot without any surprises and a fairytale ending. I gave it three stars because a few characters were colorful enough to be memorable.
Aug 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such an amazing book I couldn't put it down!! I need more books like this I laughed out loud and I cried too, amazing writer wicked story line so true to life!! X I hope we get the read Ciaran's side!!
Jun 08, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lovely light read with believable characters and a big hairy dog. Was willing the romance on all through the book. This is the first book I have read by this author but it certainly won't be the last.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Sígueme la corriente
  • La Partitura
  • The Storm
  • Los trenes del azúcar
  • Collide
  • Spoiler Alert
  • Romancing the Teacher
  • Pregúntame mañana
  • Ashblane's Lady
  • The Snow-Kissed Bride
  • Winning the Single Mom's Heart
  • Romeo y Julieta / Julio César
  • The Space Between Us
  • Manhattan Boss, Diamond Proposal
  • The Boys of Summer (Summer, #1)
  • Un cuento perfecto
  • Wrongful Death (Anna Travis, #9)
  • The Christmas Cookie House: A Sweet Holiday Romance (Christmas House Romances Book 1)
See similar books…
The official bit:

Since securing the top prize in widely-publicized UK writing contest Racy Reads on ITV’s Lorraine show, Anouska Knight has become an international sensation with her debut novel, Since You've Been Gone, hitting both The Bookseller and Heatseekers bestseller lists and securing praise from the likes of Jackie Collins and Jenny Colgan.
Her books have since gone on to be published in

Related Articles

Jennifer Weiner is the author of many bestsellers, including Good in Bed, In Her Shoes, and Mrs. Everything. She's also a contributing opinion...
95 likes · 25 comments
“Out here, without the clouds of cigar smoke, there was nothing to compete with the scent of the rich wood panelling, the preparation of savory foods somewhere off in the house and, over that, the subtle sweetness of the more polite Argyll's cologne. It wasn't like the bottle I slipped under Charlie's pillow every Christmas Eve, not quite so familiar. This had a sweeter edge to it, the difference between flowers and berries.” 1 likes
“He was talking animatedly to two senior ladies, dressed in enough finery to buy the average home, no doubt. He brought one of their hands to his mouth, and then her friend's. He was such a charmer. I was charmed from here.
"He gets that from me," Feragal growled into my ear, leaving me to Ciaran, now making his way towards me.
I watched him stride certainly all the way to where I waited for him.
"Wow," he said, placing his hand at my waist, grazing his thumb over the detailing of the sash there. I was going to kiss Martha again when I got home.
"I like your sporran." I grinned.
"I like your everything," he countered, leaning in to kiss my cheek. "You look beautiful, Holly."
And I was done for the night. I could spill food down myself, trip over, whatever. The look in Ciaran's eyes was what I'd most wanted from the evening, and I already had it. To tuck away and keep forever.”
More quotes…