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Before we grow old by Clare Swatman {Book tour review}

Updated: Aug 14, 2023

Hello and welcome to todays review! I am talking about the gorgeous book 'Before we grow old' by Clare Swatman. This book was absolutely devastating but also hugely uplifting and I couldn't drag myself away from it! Thank you to Boldwood books and Rachels random resources for allowing me a copy of this book to read and review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Front cover of Before we grow Old by Clare Swatman


When seven-year-old Fran first met Will they knew instantly that they were made for each other. For eleven years they were inseparable, but then, at the age of eighteen, Will just upped and disappeared. Twenty-five years later Will is back.

Is fate trying to give them a second chance?

Still nursing the heart break from all those years ago, Fran is reluctant to give Will the time of day. The price Will must pay is to tell the truth – the truth about why he left, the truth about why he’s back…

And Fran has her own secrets to hide. The time has come to decide what Fran and Will really want from life – before it’s too late.

My thoughts

Wow!! What an absolute tear jerker this was. I did not anticipate being sucked into Fran and Wills world quite so fully.  From the beginning of the book I was sucked in hook, line and sinker.  I loved the fact that the story spanned so many years, starting from when Fran was only 7 years old!

I loved the writing style being from Frans perspective, it is rare that you read a book with such deep emotional outcomes to be told in just one persons thoughts so I enjoyed that immensely.

The style it was written was fabulous, jumping between timelines to build a picture of their relationship and the reasons behind the decisions made.  

I adored the characters in the story.  As well as Fran and Will their family members were a huge part of the tale, Frans best friend Mags just seemed like the kind of person everyone needs in their corner. Frans relationship with her son was so touching, Kieran being her whole world, you can see how this happened being a single parent and having suffered the losses that she had previously.  Their journey together was lovely and I can only hope I have as good a relationship with my son when he becomes 13!

Fran and Will lost chances in life but showed just how important it is to make the most of the time you have and use the life you have to get as much done as possible.

I loved the bucket list, I have a few of those things on mine! It certainly inspired me to live life as much as possible and be present with your loved ones as much as possible. We only have one life and we should make the most of it! 

Thanks to you Clare for bringing such a gorgeous story to my life. I recommend you get this on your TBR instantly.  It is heart-breaking, gut wrenching and I cried a lot, however it also lifts your spirits and brings positivity.  This is a book to look out for in 2022.

If this book sounds like it would be up your street then you can purchase it here -

Author Bio

Clare Swatman is the author of three women’s fiction novels, published by Macmillan, which have been translated into over 20 languages. She has been a journalist for over twenty years, writing for Bella and Woman & Home amongst many other magazines. She lives in Hertfordshire.

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