To give you a brief synopsis; it’s about Leena, who is struggling to come to terms with the death of her sister and is in a desperate need of a break from her work. It’s also about Eileen (Leena’s Grandmother), who is looking for a new chance at love at 80 years old. The two switch places for 8 weeks.
Like in The Flat Share, O’Leary creates characters who are so genuine and real; they are people you want to meet in real life. Every character has their own significance, and background, and personality to quirk, and it’s truly beautiful.
The Switch teaches us the importance of loyalty and relationships with both family and friends in the most wonderful way —it made me want to go and hug everyone I love.
When I got towards the end of the book, I kept trying to have a break in between chapters so I couldn’t finish it … but after a couple minutes I would be straight back reading it!
The novel it’s self came at a perfect point in my life for me. Having recently lost my Nain (welsh for Grandma), Eileen’s characteristics were very similar in some ways and it was a really comforting read in that respect. However, I am sad I never got to lend her the book because Nain would have ADORED it — it was nice to imagine a hypothetical switch with her on a regular day.
Perhaps it’s because of it’s relevance and resonance with my personal life, but I have to say it, The Switch is my favourite fiction book of the year!
I know this is a bold statement but I could barely put it down—it was just so positive and heartwarming.
If you need a feel good, real, and genuine book then this is the one for you.
I can’t wait until The Road Trip, O’Leary’s next novel, comes out in April 2021
Have you read any of O’Leary’s novels? What has been your favourite read this year? Let me know in the comments