Author: Antonia Hayes
Publisher: Little Brown
Twelve-year-old Ethan Forsythe, an exceptionally talented boy obsessed with physics and astronomy, has been raised alone by his mother in Sydney, Australia. Claire, a former professional ballerina, has been a wonderful parent to Ethan, but he s becoming increasingly curious about his father s absence in his life. Claire is fiercely protective of her talented, vulnerable son and of her own feelings. But when Ethan falls ill, tied to a tragic event that occurred during his infancy, her tightly-held world is split open.
Thousands of miles away on the western coast of Australia, Mark is trying to forget about the events that tore his family apart, but an unexpected call forces him to confront his past and return home. When Ethan secretly intercepts a letter from Mark to Claire, he unleashes long-suppressed forces that like gravity pull the three together again, testing the limits of love and forgiveness.
I’m so excited to be a part of the blog tour for Relativity, a fantastic book that I SO enjoyed. Read on to see what I thought…
Relativity is a novel that mixes the out of the ordinary with the ordinary. It depicts, for the most part, ‘real life’ – ie. family life and relationships that most of us experience all the time, but with some added elements that are a little different, giving the novel a magical touch without ever feeling ridiculous or unbelievable. It feels like an enjoyable, heartfelt journey through the lives of the characters, though at times the content is quite hard to read about – it definitely leaves you thinking about it after you’ve finished.
Ethan is a lovely character. He’s so sweet and funny – you can’t help but warm to him, and in the scenes where other kids are being cruel to him my heart felt like it was breaking! You really care about him and his feelings, as well as his mother Claire, and even his dad Mark, even though he is, according to Claire, a bad father to Ethan. Because of an incident many years ago, her and Mark have had no contact – until now.
This is a story of childhood and growing up, of relationships and whether one mistake by someone can ruin so many relationships forever – between mother and father, between father and son… even between mother and son, in some ways. It really made me think about how one devastating moment can change the course of so many lives forever.
Part of the novel focuses on Mark and Claire when they were young and first fell in love, and being quite a romantic at heart I really enjoyed reading these bits. It all leads up to the ‘incident’ that changes everything, though, and as the readers we’re aware of this, so there’s a sense of foreboding throughout that we’ll soon find what exactly happened. The other part of the story is set in the present day, with Ethan finally learning more about his dad and the consequences of this.
Physics, a subject that plays a huge part of this and one I know very little about, not being particularly good at science myself, is woven so beautifully into the story and feels really magical, even though it is (of course) pure science! Even though it’s set in Austrailia, the other side of the world, I felt really close to the characters by the end, when I finished the book with a contented sigh -though I didn’t want it to finish! Antonia Hayes has done a great job of creating a sparkling, lovely story that you won’t want to put down.
Many thanks to Little Brown for the copy of this novel as part of the blog tour!
Here’s tomorrow’s stops on the blog tour to look out for: