Brutally dumped by her girlfriend, Ally is homeless, friendless and jobless… but at least she has Malcolm. Wounded and betrayed, Ally has made off with the one thing she thinks might soothe the pain. Emily’s cat,
After a long train journey she arrives home to her dad in Sheffield, ready to fold herself up in her duvet and remain on the sofa for the foreseeable. Her dad has other ideas. A phone call later, and Ally is reunited with her first ever beard and friend of old, Jeremy. He too is broken-hearted and living at home again.
In an inspired effort to hold each other up, the pair decide to sign up for the local half marathon in a bid to impress their exes with their commitment and athleticism.
Given neither of them can run, they enlist the support of athletic, not to mention beautiful, Jo. But will she have them running for the hills… or will their ridiculous plan pay off…?
October has been a month of mood reading for me, with no time to plan a monthly tbr, The Split appealed as a book that was passed to me, highly recommended by a friend. Romantic fiction, it ticked the box for an enjoyable and entertaining read and my enjoyment was further enhanced by the main characters being gay.
Ally and Emily had been together for 7 years when Emily met someone else and swiftly moved on, leaving Ally unanchored and lost. With no alternative she headed home, north to Sheffield and returned to her old room and her dad. Fortuitously her old friend Jeremy, similarly dumped and adrift is back home to and proves the perfect tonic for Ally as together they mourn their exes. A social media post sends them on an ambitious plan to run a half marathon; lycra and the running club swiftly follow.
Ally is a likeable character, heartbroken over the loss of Emily who she keeps in touch with over email. For her this breakup becomes a journey of self discovery, Emily was her everything and somehow within that relationship she had lost herself. As the story unfolds, we learn more about Emily, her family, her identity and sexuality. The book was a positive LGBTQ own voices work of fiction, which successfully paves the way for rom coms to depict love across the spectrum of relationships. A loud shout out for equality in fiction!
The story itself followed a fairly tried and tested formula, but there is a reason why these books are so successful, the path of true love is never smooth and inevitably this makes a great story. I enjoyed this book a lot, Ally especially was a great character as she mended her broken heart, got fit and got a job. An excellent story of resilience as Ally found out that what she thought she wanted and needed may not be correct!
Out now and available to buy.
About the Author
Laura Kay is a writer and editor. She has an MA in American History from the University of Sheffield, and now lives in London with her wife and cat. In 2018 Laura was selected as one of ten PRH WriteNow mentees. This is her first novel. She is based in London.