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The Day I Died Paperback – 14 May 2009

3.1 out of 5 stars 64 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (14 May 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847561500
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847561503
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 3.1 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,164,707 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

‘Not your average chick lit!’
Closer

About the Author

The publication of Polly Courtney's debut novel, Golden Handcuffs, a fictional exposé of her career in the Square Mile, earned Polly acclaim in the Observer, The Times, Sunday Times, Independent, Guardian, Daily Express, Daily Mail, Evening Standard and many other publications. Aside from writing, Polly works on various sports-related web ventures including Girls in Football.com and is a keen footballer who plays for her local team, Old Actonians LFC, in West London. Polly also plays in a semi-professional string quartet, No Strings Attached, an all-girl ensemble that plays all over the UK. She lives in London.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Firstly I would not tag this as Chick-Lit.
It is a modern novel with a novel storyline and is engaging with well defined characters, some of whom are quite amusing and likeable, and moves along at a good pace. BUT ... despite an excellent concept, much of what happens is totally unbelievable in the real world.
People that the main character Jo/Rebecca meets are very understanding and trusting and forgive her misdemeanors and rudeness.
Additionally she gains employment without references , is left in charge of cash when she has very recently met people, and, in the case of a job working with children child protection checks.
I think although it is not chick lit it will be a good beach read and despite it's interesting ideas I could not give it more than a 1 for it's implausability .
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Surprised I stuck this out to the end. It took me weeks to read (and a book I am enjoying can be finished in hours, so that gives you some idea of how much I liked it). This "back of the book" stuff sounded promising but there weren't really any "shocking" secrets (if you want shocking read Monster Love by Carol Topolski), just humdrum every-day boring ones. And the story was neither dark nor disturbing, just very very irritating and laughably unrealistic. The central character is deeply unlikeable, in either of her alternate lives, and you could see how it was all going to end by about halfway through the book. I just didn't CARE what happened to Jo/Rebecca and, to be honest, I wished she'd been killed off by the bomb on Page 1 and given us all a break. Really don't bother with this - there are so many books worth reading out there and this ain't one of them!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The storyline was so ridiculous, i just couldn't throw myself into it at all. The main character is so unlikeable, and has no redeeming qualities whatsoever! She's rash, rude, an addict who seems to fall for every man who wanders past her, sweary, and a total liar. She falls into a job working with children by lying about it, she throws her toys out of the pram at everyone who she remotely suspects of betraying her, yet easily trusts yet another total stranger five seconds later.

This is such a ridiculously stupid book, and not well written either, I wish I could return it, and get the hours of my life back that I wasted reading it.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This was a bit of an annoying read, although it had a promising subject.

A young woman is found shoeless and flimsily clad after a nightclub bombing in London. An ambulance worker puts a jacket over her shoulders to keep her warm but when he is called away she wanders off with no recolection of who she is or where she has come from. Fortunately the jacket has a wallet in the pocket and a fair sum of money, also a card with the name Jo Simmons, which she adopts as her name.

I enjoyed the start and was anticipating a good read. Unfortunatey the lucky find of the wallet was followed by rather too many lucky breaks, until the whole story began to take on a rather fairy tale feel.
I liked the topical use of Facebook as a tool to discovering her true identity and also the discrepancy between her old identity and her new one - but could she really have changed that much just by losing her memory? Is one's identity so ruled by circumstance and so little affected by personality?

Not really a book I will be recommending but an interesting concept that would have been better if it had been more plausible.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I was delighted to read, on the back of this paperback, the publisher's opinion that it would appeal to fans of Maggie O'Farrell and Sophie Hannah, as I consider myself a fan of both these authors, especially the latter. I was interested, therefore, to see how Polly Courtney - a writer I have not previously encountered, although this is her third novel - would measure up.

Incidentally, also on the back of the book was an innovation I have not seen before - a pictorial depiction of the type of content, using little icons to signify "Drama", "Comedy", "Love", etc. ("Sex" is represented by a pair of frilly knickers, which seems, er... ever so slightly tacky.) Anyway, "The Day I Died" is, according to this system, comprised mainly of Drama with side helpings of Love and Friendship. I'm not quite sure I see the point of this idea - and I presume the majority of readers are not so dim that they need highly simplified pictures to enable them to decide whether to read something or not.

On with the plot. A young woman regains consciousness in the street outside a bombed-out nightclub, flimsily dressed and with no shoes. She quickly realises that she can remember nothing about herself, not even her name, and rather than seek help, she wanders off (luckily wearing someone else's jacket, which contains a wallet with a large sum of money). Eventually boarding a bus, she adopts the name "Jo Simmons" from a card in the wallet, and, pitching up in an Oxfordshire village, somehow manages - through luck and mishap - to put together a semblance of a new life, acquiring a job and a place to stay.

Initially remembering nothing, Jo both longs for and dreads revelations of the past, which come gradually and are often unsettling.
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