Cover Image: How to Save a Life

How to Save a Life

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Unpopular opinion!
This book is meant to be a light read about making hard choices over and over again. 

Honest to god, trying to read this felt exactly like this. Tedious!

I did not enjoy this book. I tried very very hard, but this book just didn't cut it for me. In fact, it frustrated me to see people sacrificing themselves at the altar. Why? 

It's displeasing to see people make choices that are self destructive. I failed to understand why all our lead characters were portrayed clearly so needy/ pitiable. I didn't connect with the characters and what logic drove them.

I will post a detailed review on my blog
Was this review helpful?
Rating: All the stars
Where do I start with this book! 
I know it's categorized as a romance, but it got more to it than that. this is a beautiful story about longlasting friendships, second chances, bravery, and how it truly is to start a new career. 
The storyline is a series of events involving 3 characters: Kerry, Tim, and Joel. Following their journey through life, in a period of 18 years, beginning with the grim incident that kickstarted it all: a cardiac arrest. 

I was hooked from the first chapter. I barely stopped myself from rushing to the ending. I seriously couldn't stop reading it. I didn't feel, to me, like a work of fiction at all! It was more like reading a memoir. I'm just in awe of the AMAZING character development, and the writing, that was SO fluid it felt like it was written by 3 different people.
I genuinely think It will make a great movie.
I really adored the rawness of every emotion that the characters experienced. I couldn't root for one character only. I sympathize with all of them (a little less with Tim). But every one of them was real and flawed.
Many thanks to Netgalley and Pan Macmillan for my ARC
Was this review helpful?
Tragic, informative, frustrating but brilliant. 

I’m going to be honest, I am that naive person who thought CPR alone could restart the heart.  Although this is a fictional tale, it’s embedded with a very important message that everyone should know.  

The story starts well with youngsters in a period of time so familiar to my own timeline it made me nostalgic.  As a traumatic event unfolds we learn the aftermath of how such an event can effect us on our journey to adulthood.  The storyline itself was fascinating and scary at the same time.  The author touched on mental health issues, substance abuse and of course, how to save a life! But cleverly, the author showed us there are many ways to save a life, not just CPR.  

Although I got frustrated at times with certain characters and their reactions and actions to events, it kept me reading and I binged hard on this story.  It’s a book that I can 100% say has impacted me for the better.
Was this review helpful?
I’ve literally just read the last page of this novel and don’t mind admitting that I cried a little bit! What a great book - it has feature film written all over it and in my head, I’m already casting Kerry, Joel and Tim. Early in the novel, you think it’s just a standard love triangle but there’s so much more to it than that. Add in the practical information about saving lives and the technical knowledge of the writer, giving some depth to the context, and you’ve got an interesting, engaging and absorbing read. I liked the switching of narrative perspective too. No spoilers on the ending but it kept me guessing - I don’t like being able to work it out too early! This’ll be a chart topper.
Was this review helpful?
When Joel goes into cardiac arrest it’s Kerry  and Tim who come to his rescue. What follows is the most wonderful novel about these three characters who are thrown together that evening. Kerry is a brilliant character, incredibly relatable. Would 100% recommend this novel
Was this review helpful?
I loved this book from the very first page! Kerry is a bit of a geek who has a secret crush on the school's most popular boy, who doesn't? It's New Year's Eve 1999 when Joel suddenly goes into cardiac arrest and Kerry and her friend Tim, are the ones to come to his aid. And so begins a beautiful story following the journey of the 3 people who's lives were changed at the fateful strike of midnight.
Kerry is the most relatable character as I think it's safe to say, we've all been that school girl holding a secret crush for someone who you think is way out of your league. 
Remniscient of One Day and more recently, Normal People. I absolutely adored this story and was hooked from the start, desperate to know what would happen to Kerry, Joel and Tim. I was so immersed I found myself getting annoyed every time something didn't work out the way it should have.
Can't recommend it enough!
Was this review helpful?
Move over Dex and Em, Kerry and Joel are the new couple who have taken a little piece of my heart. 

At the start of the novel is the life-changing event that impacts Joel, Tim and Kerry. It is New Years Eve 1999, Joel's heart stops and Kerry leaps into action to perform life-saving CPR, whilst Tim is initially frozen in panic. 

Tracking the three for the next twenty years and how this event has affected them, this is a coming of age story with an important medical message at its core. Told from the three perspectives, this added an extra dimension and insight into their thoughts and feelings. I shared tears with them over relationship fails, mental health issues, family crisis and the descent into substance abuse. My heart hurt as each of them made foolish mistakes, but then cheered them on as they attempted to put things right. The complicated relationship between Kerry and Joel was both frustrating but entirely understandable, and by the end of the novel, I could think of no better way for it to have played out. 

I will definitely be buying a copy of the book to keep when this is released next year, and I hope it achieves the success it deserves. 

My thanks go to the publishers and NetGalley for the advance copy in return for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4 just about stars

I’m going to be generous and up this to a 4 but I was undecided at the end.

It started so great but the older the characters got, the more annoying they, and their decisions, became.

You really do have to suspend believe and go with every coincidence and romantic notion in this book.

Having said that, it kept me turning the pages to find out what happened and overall enjoyable.
Was this review helpful?

I had seen so many good things about this book! So I knew I had to request a copy and I was kindly accepted :) 

It’s based on the lives of three characters and how their paths cross through life after an incident when they were young. It also shows how certain actions or things you do/say can Impact you and others for the rest of their lives! It’s quite a thought provoking novel! 

I really liked how throughout the book there were Instructions on how to save a life . It was very clever and felt like you were genuinely learning something as well as enjoying a story. 

I was particularly keen on the characters, they had their likeable traits but at times I found them annoying but to be honest they were very genuine and real people! It was very much real life! 

I did at some parts throughout the book find myself wondering where it was going as it didn’t really have a ‘plot’ as such. It just tells the story of their lives. But I enjoyed the book never the less and it was cleverly written. 

It isn’t my usual book genre so it was a nice change and Eva is a very talented writer!

Thank you @netgalley and @panmacmillan for the opportunity to read and review how to save a life.
Was this review helpful?
Joel, Tim, Kerry, three people many of us have met in our life, not with the same story but the same hope, spirit and determination. I loved this book. It was emotive just at the right times, and with a strong enough narrative to take you through their lives.
Would recommend and buy.
Thank you NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review.
Was this review helpful?
One night Joel’s heart stops. Standing on the sidelines of the football pitch, Kerry sees Joel fall. Her first aid training kicks in and she performs CPR to save Joel’s life. Her friend Tim freezes and is unable to help.

How To Save a Life deals with the events of the following 18 years. Joel, Kerry and Tim’s lives intertwine, sometimes straying apart, sometimes colliding together. The book discusses guilt and fate and shows how easily somebody’s life can fall apart - but also how someone can pick up the pieces and start to rebuild.

The book dives into hard-hitting issues and important topics, dealing with substance abuse, mental health and dealing with death. I was absolutely engrossed in the stories of the characters - the impact one action can have on somebody years later and how they deal with this. When I read the description I wasn’t expecting to love this book as much as I did - it really surprised me. It’s really well-written, and I’m still thinking about it now a few weeks later. I definitely recommend it!
Was this review helpful?
What a beautiful book! A love story involving three main characters and told from each character's point of view. Follow Kerry, Tim and Joel's entwined lives starting from a fateful event on New Year's Eve 1999. Joel, a popular and talented footballer has his whole life mapped out as a promising football apprentice with Dolphins FC until his heart stops whilst playing football with his friends on the eve of the new Millennium. Kerry who hopes to become a doctor starts to work on bringing Joel back whilst Tim who also dreams of becoming a doctor simply freezes. 

WIthout giving too much away you follow all 3 character's lives against a backdrop of major events that we have all lived through like 911, 7/7 bombings in London etc. Sometimes life doesn't always work out how you planned; in your career or your love life and every time you think certain characters are getting their lives together, something else happens to change the course of their futures.

The detailed medical side of the book is informative and explained well and fits perfectly into the structure of the story and ultimately you realise there are many ways to save a life.

Thank you to Eva Carter and NetGalley for the chance to read an advanced copy of How To Save a Life. Expect this beautiful love story to be a popular read next year. A 5 star read!
Was this review helpful?
This story follows two people after a life changing moment. It is a coming of age story that takes an in-depth look into topics I haven’t seen covered in books before and some that I have like substance abuse.

The important steps to take in an emergency are cleverly woven into the story and means that this book carry’s a very important message.

I was close to tears at the end and then I read the authors note and I was in floods.
Was this review helpful?
Absolutely loved this book from page one. Three incredible main characters, dozens of delicate topics written about sensitively and informatively (addiction, depression, PTSD, terminal illness, unrequited love, unwanted pregnancies, miscarriage, abortion). Definitely had the feel of Sally Rooney’s Normal People, I loved Kerry and Joel just as much! Really loved that it was set in my hometowns of Brighton, Worthing and Arundel too!

I went into this book thinking it may be a teen-romance read but it was SO much more than that! Would love to find out what happens to Kerry, Joel and Tim in their 40s! 

I will definitely be recommending this to all my friends... A beautiful book!

Thank you so much to the publisher, author and Netgalley for this digital ARC.
Was this review helpful?
This book follows three 18 year old medical students and friends, Kerry and Tim, and Joel - a promising footballer about to sign for the Dolphins. On New Year’s Eve, at a party Kerry and Tim are watching a football match and Kerry, who fancies Joel, witnesses him dropping to the ground.  When he doesn’t move, she realises something is badly wrong and runs to help, administering CPR, while Tim on the other hand, stands frozen unable to move.  

The story goes on and is then told from the three perspectives over the next 18 years and gives us an insight into their own personal lives, their thoughts dealing with personal topics including depression and mental health and this draws us in and makes the characters come to life and the story so realistic.  The narrative is excellent as we see them crossing paths and coming in and out of each other’s lives. in the aftermath of that since that fateful millennium eve.

Not my usual type of book, but so glad I read it!  Highly recommend.
Was this review helpful?
How to Save a Life involves three main characters;  Kerry, Joel and Tim.
Kerry and Tim have been best friends since primary school and are both hoping to become Drs, Joel is a superstar footballer who has a bright footballing career ahead of him. Celebrating the New Year, Joel collapses and Kerry delivers CPR whilst Tim watches on - shellshocked - unable to help.
The book details how each of the characters stories intertwine with each other, Kerry and Joel, Kerry and Tim and so forth for many years.
We read how once promised aspirations are snatched away in the blink of an eye and how each character deals with the fallout. 

It is cleverly written with advice on how performing CPR is critical until medical. tried help arrives.
The story is heartbreaking in sections and throughout, I couldn't help to think that there were many 'sliding door moments.'

I really enjoyed reading How to save a life.
Was this review helpful?
The first chapter had me gripped, and it didn't let go of me till the end. I won't spoil this book for you, but this is one of my favourite reads of 2020. I am going to get the paperback for my reading buddies, and I thoroughly enjoyed the book. Amazing title too!
Was this review helpful?
I really loved this book and I was heavily invested in Kerry and Joel's characters and really wanted to see a happy ever after (Tim not so much).

The story centres on what happens when a life is saved through CPR, the repercussions and fall outs when the path you thought you were on, gets changed.  It also covers, over 18 years, other heavy topics like depression, addiction, obiligation, fear and guilt but without it being a sad, melancholy read.

Throughout the book there are instructions on how to give CPR and the importance of acting fast which was a great refresher for me and may even help a reader save a life in the future.

Great book and would definitely recommend!
Was this review helpful?
Date reviewed: August 13, 2020

When life for the entire universe and planet turns on its end and like everyone else you "have nothing to do" while your place of work is closed and you are continuing to be in #COVID19 #socialisolation,  superspeed readers like me can read 250+ pages/hour, so yes, I have read the book … and many more today. And it is way too hot to go outside, so why not sit in from of the blasting a/c and read and review books??  BTW - stay home and save lives!!!!!!!! No tan is worth dying for.

I requested and received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley, the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review.  

From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do 😸.

Joel’s heart stops as the rest of the world welcomes the start of a new century. What happens next will change the course of three people’s lives forever.

It’s nearly midnight when Joel’s heart stops. Kerry saves his life, performing CPR for eighteen long minutes, whilst her best friend Tim freezes, unable to help. 

That moment of life and death changes the course of all three lives over the next eighteen years: each time Kerry, Joel and Tim believe they’ve found love, discovered their vocation, or simply moved on, their lives collide again. 

Structured around the four simple steps that can save a life, this is both a love story and an exploration of what it means to be brave – because bravery isn't just about life or death decisions; it’s also about how to keep on living afterwards. . . 

First off, I cannot get the lyrics to the Fray's song "How to Save a life" running through my head as I am a HUGE "Grey's Anatomy" fan and that song is redolent in all seasons: I actually told hubby that went he show is over, we would be cancelling our cable. 

I absolutely loved this book - its structure is unique and I loved how it brought the characters back time and time again as we all say in my one book club that we have people in our life that we run into time and time again years apart and that they are there for a reason. (We all have people that we pray we don't run into again but that is a whole different book club discussion!)

The book was wonderfully crafted and totally readable - I absolutely inhaled it in one sitting (yes, I read super-fast).  I feel like I am pregnant with this book as it comes out nine months from today and that I cannot wait to give birth to it - mark its release date and/or pre-order it as you will want to read this book.

As always, I try to find a reason to not rate with stars as I love emojis (outside of their incessant use by "🙏-ed Social Influencer Millennials/#BachelorNation survivors/Tik-Tok and YouTube  Millionaires/etc. " on Instagram and Twitter... Get a real job, people!) so let's give it 🚑🚑🚑🚑🚑 (And hope that somehow McDreamy and McSteamy are there waiting for you!)
Was this review helpful?
Such a lovely, fantastic book! I liked the three characters equally which is unusual for me. Excellent writing and character development. Perfect for your book club as the story deals with many controversial subjects and decisions.
I would say that the main theme of the book is self-actualisation, finding your own happiness and working hard to have the life you want. And, sometimes or in all times, how to thrive on your "option b". 
I loved this book. Kerry, Joel and Tim will stay with me forever.
Was this review helpful?