Miranda Dickinson’s latest book The Day We Meet Again is out today. A tale of friendship, finding yourself and being brave, it lives up to all my eager anticipation for this new novel from her.
Their love story started with goodbye…
Phoebe and Sam meet by chance at St Pancras station. Heading in opposite directions, both seeking their own adventures, meeting the love of their lives wasn’t part of the plan. So they make a promise: to meet again in the same place in twelve months’ time if they still want to be together.
But is life ever as simple as that?
I’ve always found railway stations interesting places to linger in, an integral part of any journey I go on. And here, Miranda Dickinson taps into the magic that sometimes swirls through a railway station with its propensity for bringing strangers together. London’s St Pancras, the station in The Day We Meet Again, will play an important role in Sam and Phoebe’s stories and even take on a new significance for them as time goes on.
I enjoyed seeing where and how Sam and Phoebe meet and, as they get to know each other, I could certainly feel the pull of their mutual attraction. I was also hugely relieved when they continued on with their planned journeys because I felt these were important. They each needed to find themselves, come to terms with their past or work out what they wanted, or didn’t want from life, before committing to anything new, while also testing how they felt about each other over the course of the coming year.
The alternating chapters worked really well in keeping the story moving along, and showing the same event from their two (often different or confused) perspectives. Miranda also showed to good effect how miscommunication can still be rife, even with every modern tool we have available to us, and that these are still often but poor substitutes for face-to-face contact.
One of the aspects I particularly like about any Miranda Dickinson novel is the community she creates around the central couple, and in The Day We Meet Again, we have several different ones in the friendship groups, new and old, for both characters. I could gauge a lot about the main characters from how their friends treated them and looked out for them, and vice versa.
When I was about halfway through the book, I started listening to the playlist* Miranda compiled while writing the book, and continued to play it in the background while reading, which only enhanced my enjoyment of the book and the journeys the characters went on. I’d suggest you try this out.
The Day We Meet Again is quite an emotional ride at times with each character having to face things they’ve been hiding from or avoiding. I thought there was a good balance between the two journeys. Initially, I felt sure I would enjoy Phoebe’s more, especially once she was in Italy, but Sam’s musical and emotional journeys pulled me in by how life-affirming and bittersweet they were.
The Day We Meet Again is a story about taking chances and finding the courage to live and love, however many twists and turns it takes along the way before you get there. It’s one Miranda Dickinson tells with real warmth for her characters and a lightness of touch that engenders hope. It can’t help but make you feel that Sam and Phoebe are changed people; all the better for having met each other, whatever happens after their year apart, thanks to their shared journey through friendship, courage, misunderstandings, heartache and joy. I loved every minute I spent with these two as they got their lives back on track.
The Day We Meet Again by Miranda Dickinson is published by HQ Stories, an imprint of Harper Collins. It is available as an audiobook, ebook and in paperback from today. You can find it at Amazon UK or buy it from Hive instead, where every purchase helps support your local independent bookshop. To find out more about Miranda and her books, check out her Author Website, Facebook page or find her on Twitter.
* You can find the playlist tracks at the back of the paperback.
My thanks to Miranda and the publisher for making available a review copy via NetGalley and for sending me an early finished copy.