So first of all I’m just going to say that if you like romantic fiction, go and buy this book immediately as it’s just wonderful. And really, that could be my whole review! But I suppose I should really say a bit more…
The First Time I Saw You is about Samuel and Sophie who meet in Washington DC in the middle of a thunderstorm in the most romantic opening scene and spend a wonderful week together. However, Sophie discovers something about Samuel which causes her to leave him abruptly. Even though they meet up again a few months later and still feel that strong connection, this same issue is causing a problem and they part again. However, they both come to realise that despite everything they still love each other and want to be together. But finding each other again is not so easy.
As always, I don’t want to give things away so it’s difficult to say too much about the plot. You really need to follow Sophie and Samuel’s journeys to find each other with all its oh-so-nearly moments yourself. In our internet and social media connected world, it’s hard to imagine that two people would have such difficulty tracking each other down but for various reasons they do. So often their paths so very nearly cross but something happens and it’s a near miss. Or there are misunderstandings which send them on the wrong track.
I adored Samuel’s madcap family, especially his da. It was so moving to see how he wanted to support his son through a difficult time by basically making no allowances for him and encouraging him just to get on with life. Some of his sayings and the things they got up to together had me crying with laughter. One such moment involved taking a selfie in a nightclub which Samuel’s mam most definitely didn’t appreciate! Other moments brought a lump to my throat such as when Samuel’s family made sure he didn’t miss out on Christmas.
Sophie meanwhile is going through her own emotional journey and has a very traumatic childhood to come to terms with. She has built up a protective shield around herself and I could totally understand why. Her relationship with her sister Helen was very moving as was her caring attitude to her neighbour Charlie who had his own losses to deal with. Sophie clearly had a huge capacity to love and it was so lovely to see her begin to open up to others throughout the course of the book.
The First Time I Saw You is a beautiful story about true love and soulmates where so much lost and so much is found. It’s a book which gave me all the feels and I went through so many emotions when reading this. Emma Cooper’s words touched my heart, broke it several times then sent it soaring. It’s a wonderful book and already a contender for my favourite reads of the year list.
My thanks to Anne Cater at Random Things Tours for inviting me to take part in the blogtour and to the publishers for my review copy of the book. The First Time I Saw you is available now and you will find various buying options on the publishers website here: The First Time I Saw You
From the back of the book
Six-foot-two Irish man who answers to the name Samuel McLaughlin.
Has weak shins and enjoys show tunes.
If found, please return to Sophie Williams.
Before Sophie met Samuel she saw the world in grey.
Before Samuel met Sophie, he never believed in love at first sight.
When they first meet, something tells them they are meant to be.
But fate has other ideas.
Now they have lost each other and can’t see a way back.
But they’ve already changed each other’s lives in more ways
than they ever expected…
About the author
Emma Cooper is a former teaching assistant, who lives in Shropshire with her partner and four children. She spends her spare time writing novels, drinking wine and watching box-sets with her partner of twenty-four years, who still makes her smile every day. Emma has always wanted to be a writer – ever since childhood, she’s been inventing characters (her favourite being her imaginary friend ‘Boot’) and is thrilled that she now gets to use this imagination to bring to life all of her creations.