I Looked Away

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 03 Jul 2019

Member Reviews

I’ve been looking forward to reading this after reading Jane’s previous books. It’s brilliant, a real page turner, there were moments when I was so drawn into the lives of the characters, I found myself anxious and holding my breath! Touches on sensitive subject matter that will challenge your current perspective. If you want something extra special to read, you can’t go far wrong reading I Looked Away.
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A story told by two very different women that whilst not my cup of tea certainly gave voice to social  and mental health issues.
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# I Looked away # Netgalley 
OMG, what a bloody Brilliant book, I was hooked from the prologue, just reading snippets prior to the prologue, I had a feeling this book had something special to say. Theirs Ellie who doesn’t really understand what happening to her mum because of her age. Plus the era back in late 70 and early 80s life was much different those days, it’s got more twist and turn than there is in a bobbin of cotton. Round and round it goes. I genuinely couldn’t put it down and I have just finished it. Here I am sat with my mouth gaping open in shock surprise, not sure what you would call it, oh and does the last 20% literally you do a double take, it’s not something you ever ever see coming. This is the first book I have read by Jane Corey, but I can assure you it definitely will not be my last, written well at a constant steady pace, I like fast paced books, however fast paced does not always suit the book, the pace is spot on and if your only going to read one book this year. Make it this one. Another powerful novel by a female writer. Awesome, fantastic. In truth I can genuinely not criticise this book in anyway at all I highly suggest you read this one
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Going into the book, I assumed it would be a simple story about a woman looking after her grandson, her taking her eye off him for a moment and him getting into trouble. It is so much deeper than that. 

The story follows Ellie, grandmother to Josh, and her entire life story. From losing her mother as a young child, her father remarrying, gaining a baby brother and an accident which changes everything to meeting her husband and having her own children. We also follow Jo, a homeless lady who is travelling around, just trying to get from day to day safely. Both of their stories tie together too. 

It's such a compelling read tackling the issue of homelessness and PTSD.
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I Looked Away is told in the voice of two people - Ellie, a middle aged grandmother and Jo, a homeless person. Ellie is married to Roger and seemingly living a stable and reasonably well-off lifestyle where she is able to help those less fortunate than herself like Jo. As the book moves on we see that Ellie’s past has been quite dark and was quite different to her current life.

This isn’t always an easy book as there’s a lot of emotional abuse and I found it hard to like Ellie as she puts up with a lot of terrible behaviour from Roger that I found hard to read. Ellie dotes on her young grandson, Josh, but one day there is a dreadful accident. We then start to learn of Ellie’s past and why she behaves the way she does. Roger is fearful that Ellie’s mental health is breaking down again or is he just gaslighting?

It’s quite confusing as to what is actually happening at times until you get into the last third and the stories of Ellie and Jo start to come together. A good read and I’ll be looking our for more books by Jane Corry. 

With thanks to NetGalley and Penguin Books (UK) for a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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What a book!  This is a gripping and emotive story, that will have you feeling great empathy with Ellie, yet also wondering what she is hiding! Read it!
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I looked away is a gripping physiological thriller told through Ellie a middle aged Grandma and Jo who lives on the streets .Ellie is in prison and we don't know why.This is a story about homelessness,mental issues and childhood trauma.It is quite a sad story brilliantly and sensitively told.It has made me think of homelessness in a different way and the many different reasons for ending up on the streets.This is one of those books that is very hard to put down.I thoroughly enjoyed it ! Many thanks to the Publisher the Author and NetGalley for my preview copy in return for an honest review.
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This is a story about the lives of Ellie and Jo.  They couldn’t be more different. Ellie is married to Roger and they have two children and one grandchild, but Roger has been known to have a few affairs over the years of their marriage.  Jo is a homeless woman, with a shaved head, who sells the Big Issue on the streets.

The story begins when Ellie is looking after her grandson, Josh, and there is a terrible accident.  We then discover the lives of Ellie and Jo through alternate chapters.

This is a great book with some very emotional content, a definite pulling heart strings story.  It is very well written and will keep you turning the pages until you find out what exactly has happened to these two women.  A brilliant read.

Thank you to Penguin Books UK and NetGalley for a digital copy of this book.
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4.5 stars rounded up to 5. What a fantastic psychological thriller with a twist this book turned out to be. It was a very emotional story and very well written. It flipped back and forward between timelines and characters which I found easy to follow and it added to the story. I will certainly be looking out for more by this author in the future
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What a brilliant read from start to finish, took 24 hours as really didnt want to put it down, a great story with some complex charecters and a twist I didn't see coming at all, highly recommended
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would like to thank netgalley and the publisher for letting me read this disturbing and amazing book

this is written as two people ellie and jo...and its their story,each have been through a  traumatic experience and i found deeply disturbing to read, it hit a few nerves, as every good book should

but on the whole i kept at it and am glad that i finished it, but it makes you feel as though you have been through the wringer...at times it was hard to carrying on reading it

well worth a read if you like thrillers that play on your mind
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This is an absolute cracker of a book.. It deals with many of the issues that we face in society today.. homelessness, domestic abuse, coercive behaviour and ptsd.. The story and the characters are full, well rounded and feel totally real. I could not put this down... I loved the two different stories and how they come together..
This book is full of heart and brilliant..
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Wow what a great story a real page turner right from the beginning Ellie loses her mother at a very young age and after her father remarries her life changes forever and after a terrible tragedy happens life will never be the same A physiological thriller with lots of twists and heartache that keeps you wanting more a fantastic 5star read
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This is a gripping story that draws the reader in from the very beginning. Well described characters and an insight into being homeless. I recommend this book
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‘I Looked Away’ by Jane Corry is a brilliantly, different, quirky thriller with numerous twists and turns.  It is the third book I have read by Jane Corry and I will be seeking out any more, which appear.

The story is told in the first person by Ellie, who is a grandmother, and Jo, who is a homeless woman trying to find her way around.  The narrative goes between the two of them from the seemingly chance meeting between the two at the beginning of the story, but it is not clear, until the final chapters, how their lives are intertwined and why.

The author tackles the homeless situation with clarity and compassion leaving the reader in no doubt how easy it can be for people to fall into this.  I found the narrative surrounding homelessness clear and realistic, holding nothing back.  This  lifestyle was a stark contrast to the middle-class life of Ellie who dotes on her grandson.

My thanks to NetGalley, Penguin Books UK and Jane Corry for my ARC in return for an honest review.

Thoroughly enjoyable read, highly recommended
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Jane Corry – I looked Away


This book had me hooked straight away, not only because I also have a grandson who I look after every Monday and I too watch him like a hawk, but because Ellie is such a believable character.

Ellie’s husband had an affair but he promised it was over, however the day he gets a call from the other woman, Ellie takes her eye of the ball and her grandson has an accident.

Ellie’s life from this point forward spirals out of control and Jane takes us on her journey paying meticulous attention to detail, and I had to pay close attention to the plot so that I didn’t miss any of the little twists and turns.

What happened in Ellie’s past that has always affected her future? Did she really kill her husband? Is her grandson dead? These questions which make you read long into the night to find the answers are very skillfully answered by the author.

Jane Corry has taken the subject of mental health issues and dealt with it in a very sympathetic and honest way.
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I looked away is a compulsive and twisty domestic noir that has been impossible to put down. With a past and present timeline, the dual first-person narrative explores the lives of Ellie - a middle-class grandmother, and Jo - a homeless woman. We see the two characters meet at the beginning of the story but just how they are connected and to what degree this seemingly inconsequential liaison has on the storyline is not revealed until we reach the story’s climax. I did have an idea as to what this might be, and as somebody who devours psychological thrillers like no tomorrow, I was right. But this did not in any way spoil things; in fact it made it all the more satisfying! 

Ellie’s timeline is mostly in the past, where we see a very different lifestyle to the middle-class woman she is today. Ellie starts off as a woman who you immediately root for. She has a lot going for her from a materialistic perspective but the one thing she can’t buy is her husband’s fidelity. We don’t see much of Roger in the present, but they have a long history together and there are a few shocks and twists as details of their relationship emerge. You just know he is a complete dick and you will be willing Ellie to pack her bags and find a better life without him. But this is a psychological thriller, so things don’t work out quite so simple as that!

But it was the characterisation of Jo that totally drew me in. Firstly, we see her arrive in Bristol. As a Bristolian, it was like I was wandering the streets with her, and it really makes you think ‘What would I do? Where would I go?’ if placed in Jo’s shoes. The character is so real, when I was in town a week after reading the book, I saw a woman who looked just like the character in my head and I thought ‘Oh look there’s Jo!’

As the two time-lines gradually converge, all the seemingly inconsequential events scattered throughout the narrative are brought to light. At the beginning of this year I decided to only review those books that excite and inspire me as a new writer. Jane Corry does this in abundance. Everything from the way the novel is structured, to the twisty and compelling plotline, to characterisation, to the writer’s colloquial and compelling voice. My list is endless. I absolutely loved this book and can’t recommend it enough.
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A superb read and I really really enjoyed it.  One thing about this book is that although it has several story threads you are never quite certain of the timing of the events.  The book is in 3 parts and I was never sure what actually happened until the end of the second part.  Events that are described in the book are there for a purpose and not simply to over describe something and you realise later on why something or someone was included.  Not wanting to spoil the third part of anyone reading this review somehow it reminded me of the film Big Fish which I love where people in Albert Finney/Ewan McGregor story appear at the end.  To sum up, I loved the book and it is well worth a read.
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I looked away by Jane Corry is the third book from the author I have read, and her books keep getting better and better.
Ellie loves her grandson Josh. She looks after him on a Monday afternoon. She takes her eyes of him for a moment as she finds her Husband Rodger is speaking to the woman he is cheating with on the phone. When an accident happens, and Ellie finds a red t-shirt floating in next door neighbours’ pond. She thinks history is repeating itself. She has never got over the death of her brother Michael when she was a schoolgirl and always blames herself for his death.
Then there is Jo a homeless woman, who meets Ellie when she has run away after what happened to Josh. The lives intertwine throughout the story, but it only comes clear how, when you get to the end of the story.
This is a very emotional and well written story with strong subjects regarding PTSD, Homeless. Mental health and abuse. I couldn’t put this down. It also enlightened me more about the subject of homelessness and what kind of circumstances that people have, that makes them end up in this way and how they deal with it day to day. I highly recommend.
Thank you NetGalley and Penguin for a copy of this book.
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I have read The Dead Ex by Jane Cory and loved it so I was very excited to read I looked away. 

In my option this book exceeded by expectations. It pulls at your heart strings and deals with issues which are sometimes swept under the carpet but which affect most families daily. 

The two main characters are from vastly different worlds. Ellie who is married to Rodger a university lecturer who has two children and a young grandson and Jo who is homeless and estranged from her family, living on the streets selling The big issue.

The story alternates between the two characters. At first I kept wondering why the  woman were connected but my question was answered in  the unexpected twisty ending. 

The life changing consequences of a child dying were wonderfully explored in this book. Also the hardships of the homeless who sometimes we feel for but often don’t do any about. 

I recommend you read this beautifully written book. It will make you think of how others are dealing with their lives and the consequences of things which have happened in their past. 

Many difficult topics such as loss, despair, guilt, secrets, mental health and homelessness are dealt with in a very sensitive way. The need for love is at the centre of the book and being a grandmother myself I related to the special bond Ellie had with her grandson. 

This must read book definitely captured my heart and Jane Corys realistic characters and insightful storytelling made it a page turner for me. 

Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for my chance to read this fantastic book.
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