Published: 31st May 2018
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
It’s a beautiful day in Manchester and four friends are meeting for a birthday lunch. But then they witness a shocking accident just metres away which acts as a catalyst for each of them. For Laura, it’s a wake-up call to heed the ticking of her biological clock. Sensible Jo finds herself throwing caution to the wind in a new relationship. Eve, who has been trying to ignore the worrying lump in her breast, feels helpless and out of control. And happy-go-lucky India is drawn to one of the victims of the accident, causing long-buried secrets to rise to the surface.
The narrative opens with a celebration of India’s birthday, lots of laughter, a little bit of potential-boyfriend-on-the-horizon gossip, delicious food and an unexpected shock. In the heart of Manchester, the four best friends witness a horrific event: a car crash, leaving multiple injured and two life changing moments. The women all react in different ways: Laura starts thinking about how she’s yet to have a baby, Eve is frozen to the spot wondering about the lump in her breast, Jo rushes to the scene in order to help anyone she can but it’s her that the needs the most help in life and India continually replays the scene of events in my mind, over and over.
“You thought you were invincible, you thought you had all the time in the world until something like this happened, shaking up your world as if it were a snow globe.”
Once the women go their separate ways after calming down from the crash, their lives all go in different directions and it’s a while until we see all four of them back together again. Laura, who is married to Matt is determined to get pregnant again and yet, after multiple miscarriages and countless hours of heartbreak, her husband doesn’t want to go through the pain and upset again. Who can blame him? With a new project at work focusing on new baby products, Laura can’t escape the world that she so desperately wants to be a part of. Eve, who is married to Neil is also struggling. She’s struggling to connect with her children but most of all, she is yet to do anything about the lump in her breast. When she accidentally knocks a client off his bike, it’s the bond between them that encourages her to finally make an appointment and have her body checked out. From my own personal experience, this particular storyline was very important to me and I just knew that Lucy would do it justice. As for Jo, she quickly embarks on a new relationship with the very dreamy Rick who happens to live in a beautiful flat with spectacular views but has baggage of a very annoying teenage girl.
“He was a Pisces and she knew full well that you couldn’t tell a fish which way to swim.”
The lives of the four best friends quickly unravel as they did with their own big life changes: a menacing step-daughter, trips to the hospital, a broken heart, two dollops of unexpected news, tears, laughter and asking for help. I found myself absolutely loving all four of the stories and for me, that is quite rare as I tend to float towards one which interests me the most but Lucy made sure that each of the women had something going on in their lives in order to keep the interest of the readers. Well, she certainly did that for me as I whizzed through the book within a matter of days.
“Sometimes it takes the most strength to admit that you’re a little bit scared. To say: I need help. To say: I can’t manage on my own and you can always lean on me, Eve. Please take that into consideration. You can always lean on me.”
From start to finish, the plot was written to absolutely perfection and each chapter was filled with realistic moments in which readers have the ability to relate to. On A Beautiful Day opened with a horrific moment, followed by large amounts of shock, a few more horrific moments but it ended so brilliantly with all four lives going in the right direction. Lucy has a way with words, that goes without saying but the way in which she captivates readers is just absolutely fantastic. I can read her books all day long.