Audiobook Review: Olive by Emma Gannon

by Emma Gannon, Sian Clifford (Narrator)

Publication date: July 23rd 2020
Publisher: Harper Collins


Knows her own mind.

OLIVE is many things, and it’s ok that she’s still figuring it all out, navigating her world without a compass. But life comes with expectations, there are choices to be made, boxes to tick and – sometimes – stereotypes to fulfil. And when her best friends’ lives start to branch away towards marriage and motherhood, leaving the path they’ve always followed together, Olive starts to question her choices – because life according to Olive looks a little bit different.

Moving, memorable and a mirror for every woman at a crossroads, OLIVE has a little bit of all of us. Told with great warmth and nostalgia, this is a modern tale about the obstacle course of adulthood, milestone decisions and the ‘taboo’ about choosing not to have children.

Source: Goodreads


I really really like Olive.

Olive Stone is a 33 year old Londoner, long term best friend to Bea, Isla and Cecily. Whilst her close-knit group of friends are settled down and have started families of their own, Olive can’t help but feel that the family life might not be for her. In fact, not wanting children was the cause of her recent break-up with her partner of 9 years.

Olive has so many relatable characteristics and I felt like the author was speaking to me in so many ways throughout this book. I don’t share Olive’s views on parenthood, but I do share her views on so many other things. Her thoughts and feelings strongly resonated with me and I really felt for and empathised with her character the whole way through.

“Turns out that you can’t Pritt-stick a life together as a child and then hop inside it when the time is right like Bert from Mary Poppins.”

This book tackles the day-to-day as well as more serious issues including infertility and IVF. What I liked most was that this was both light-hearted and contemporary without being full of cliches. It’s not all smiles and happy endings, these women are all going through their own problems and dramas just like you and I.

I loved the writing style and how it felt like a narration from Olive’s inner consciousness, her thoughts and feelings. The audiobook narration was great too and kept me immersed the whole way through. This is Emma Gannon’s debut book, I can’t wait to see what she writes next!

Overall rating: “Olive” is a book that truly resonated with me. The leading lady is flawed, she’s clumsy and she’s still finding her feet in the adult world. A really enjoyable audiobook and a big 5 stars from me!


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