The Stopping Place by Helen Slavin

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At the door she was hemmed in by his hands. On her face, in her hair. At her neck. I had seen what he had not; I had seen her flinch.

Ruby Robinson drifts through life stacking shelves at the library, quiet, solitary, invisible.

Invisibility lends itself to collecting secrets, though, and Ruby has always valued the importance of knowledge. She watches the world go by from her place amongst the shelves. The bored students, the domestic dramas, and her colleague Martha –
vivacious, wild, enchanting.

Drawn in by Martha’s light, Ruby finds herself watching, observing… which is why she notices the cracks in Martha’s shiny new relationship before anyone else.

Forced to intervene, Ruby is drawn out of the shadows, but all actions have consequences, particularly for someone with a past she’d rather forget.

Ruby spends her days among books. She should have known that every story has a history and that secrets don’t stay hidden for long…

My Review

Meet Ruby Robinson, a librarian and self confessed people watcher. The quite unobtrusive woman that no one really notices, but she notices them and when you blend into the background it is surprising what you see and hear. So it is Ruby that notices her coworker Martha is having relationship problems. She can see the tail tale signs that things are wrong, very wrong. She knows the signs and excuses of domestic violence but how far dare she become involved in Martha’s relationship at the cost to herself? Because Ruby has a secret of her own, one that she desperately wants to remain exactly that – a secret! With the arrival of the police at the library Ruby’s past catches up with her, shattering her quiet life and secrets are revealed.

The book is set in a library which being a book geek I absolutely loved! Set in two parts, present day and Ruby’s past it is certainly a rollercoaster of a ride, packed full of suspense and emotions, one that will surprise you and ultimately delight you!

For me it was Ruby’s past that made this book for me, she is a great protagonist who’s inner dialogues were so realistic that I could hear myself saying and thinking the same things, I swear her voice became and sounded like my own at times, and if nothing else, Ruby is certainly not a quitter.

This book deals with an emotional theme that is portrayed perfectly and handled with care. The setting of the book is fairly unique to this genre which is great, the characters are all well fleshed out, personable and relatable. It may not be the fastest paced book to begin with but the second half of the book makes it completely worth it. This is the first book I have read by this author and after reading this one I will definitely keep an eye out for in the future.

The Stopping Place was published back in Jan 2018 so i am a bit late in discovering it but i am glad that I did. You can grab a copy now and it is even available at the moment to read for free with Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited!

Thank you to the author Helen Slavin, publishers Agora Books and NetGalley for my copy of this book in exchange for an honest and independent review.

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