*I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
Title: If I Can’t Have You
Author: Charlotte Levin
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
Publication Date: July 9, 2020
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Samuel, the day we met I knew I’d finally found what I’ve been waiting for.
Happiness, at last.
Then you left me.
And now I am alone.
Everyone I love leaves in the end.
But not this time.
I’m not giving up on us.
I’m not giving up on you.
When you love someone, you never let them go.
That’s why for me, this is just beginning.
A story of unrequited love turned bad, If I Can’t Have You is a sinister tale of a one-sided romance that spins wildly out of control. Constance is a receptionist at a medical clinic in London, England. When a new doctor starts up his practice with them, she is immediately swept off her feet by this handsome, well-put-together stranger. Before she knows it, they’ve begun a steamy affair that she believes is true love. When he quickly casts her aside, Constance can’t quite seem to wrap her mind around it. Her own struggles with loss and abandonment overwhelm her and her feelings morph into a twisted obsession. Her difficulties are dark and often without hope. She is quite alone in the world and has become very lost. Her story is sad and she is often mistreated by those that she does make a connection with.
Constance’s behaviours are truly unhinged, but one can’t help but side with her throughout this entire story. She is at the mercy of so many people in her life, starting with the father who abandoned her and the ghost of the mother who she lost to illness. She is not well-off financially, she is subordinate to the man who makes romantic advances on her, she has a roommate who’s romantic interest in her is well beyond inappropriate, and she is looked down upon by the other women in her workplace. She really doesn’t have a lot going for her and has no one to turn to. I’d argue that although Constances behaviours are completely inappropriate, she was, is, and continues to be a victim of many men who take advantage of her and leave nothing but wreckage in their wakes.
This is a debut novel that is well-written, easy to read, and will have your heart in your throat the entire way along. It’s difficult for me to find time to read these days, and I absolutely couldn’t stop reading this one. I hope you enjoy!