You Left Early

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Member Reviews

What a powerful , heartbreaking, raw and brutally honest read. This is a very real honest book. It is not an easy read- there are part within the book that are so raw and real that it is difficult to read.
Lousia tells the story of the life she had/shared with her partner Robert Lockhart. 
Lousia gives the reader and very unsugar coated honest outlook of the effect that alcoholism has on every aspect of life and the lives of not on,y the alcoholic but also their family and friends.
It is a book that I found interesting and heartbreaking in equal measure.
It is so well written and honest which is a rare gift on times.
A must read
Thank you to both NetGalley and Harper Collins UK for my eARC in exchange for my honest unbiased review
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You Left Early is a memoir about love, grief and being the partner of someone who is addicted to alcohol.
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Having read Louisa Young’s unsentimental, very moving First World War novel ‘My Dear, I wanted to tell you’ and the follow-up ‘The Heroes’ Welcome’, I expected her memoir ‘You Left Early’ about her decades’ long relationship with the brilliant composer, Robert Lockhart, to be an unflinching examination of life with an alcoholic, and I was not wrong.
At times, the writing is almost too painful to read.  Young is extraordinarily honest about the ways in which alcohol slowly destroys the addict: physically, mentally, emotionally.  And not only the addict but also the addict’s loved ones.  In periods of sobriety Lockhart reflects on his damaged relationship with his son, his ex-wife, his father and his demanding and selfish behaviour towards Louisa.  He regrets this terribly; at heart the man is not a monster, though he does monstrous things.  Louisa Young also highlights the carer’s propensity to kid themselves that all is going well, that the truth is being told, that alcohol no longer occupies the ‘love of my life’ spot.
This memoir documents the wasted years unflinchingly.  Perhaps the reader feels particularly distressed because Lockhart and Young are two prodigiously gifted people who could have been so much happier had addiction not been their ever-present unwanted guest.  However, that is not to forget the less well-known thousands more who continue to live with this disease.  It robs the individual of their best self, their future possibilities, their fulfilling present, leaving only a foul-smelling past.  Beautifully written, thoughtful and honest, this is not a book to read quickly.  Too much at once hurts too much.  
My thanks to NetGalley and HarperCollins for a copy of this book in exchange for a fair review.
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An extraordinary memoir chronicling the relationship between the author, her partner Robert.... and alcohol, which despite not directly causing his tragic death at the age of just 52 certainly was an overpowering presence in their 30 + year relationship.  Although not ro mantically onvolved for all of that period the love they had for each other is so evidently displayed throughout. 

This is a memoir overwhelmingly one of love and loss, and the loss felt throughout Roberts life as his life at times ravaged by the effects of severe alcoholism, and Young so often powerless to stop it. Quite possibly the most humanly devastating insight into the effect alcoholism has on the person the self but also the family, the friends and bystanders. 

Incredibly powerful, striking the perfect tone. A devastating essential book.
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A completely different genre from my usual thriller or mystery story. I was drawn to this book as I grew up with an alcoholic parent and was interested in this story. Wow. It was heart wrenching and terribly real. The author really opened up her heart and soul and completely laid bare for this book. Well worth a read.
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