One Step Too Far Review
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At some point in our lives, most of us have wished that we could have a do-over—that we could walk away from the mistakes in our past, escape the old hurts, and start fresh. But when Emily Coleman walks away from her life in One Step Too Far, she learns that you can never really escape the past.

One morning, Emily decides to leave it all behind—her home, her family, her job…everything. She empties out her bank account, packs a small bag, and walks out the door. Then she catches a train from Manchester to London, where she rents a dumpy room in a house full of misfits, makes some new friends, and sets out to find a job.

Before long, Emily—now known as Cat Brown—has a new life. She has a fabulous job at a trendy advertising agency, and she shares a nice apartment with her new best friend, Angel. But as the anniversary of a life-changing event approaches, memories of the past come flooding back.

  
 
In telling Emily’s story, author Tina Seskis reveals all but the most important details to give the novel an irresistible air of mystery. She suggests that Emily once had a loving husband and a young son—as well as a baby on the way—and that something happened to convince Emily that her family was better off without her. But, instead of telling the whole story, Seskis recounts it in small, tantalizing tidbits, frequently visiting Emily’s past to offer glimpses of a bitter twin sister, a womanizing father, and the true love that seemed to promise an escape from it all.

As readers get to know Emily’s alter-ego, Cat, they’ll look forward to each new look into her former life, since each one offers hints of what went so horribly wrong. Readers will also meet some of the supporting characters—like Angel. But while she’s an interesting character with a troubled past of her own, the flashbacks to her past feel rather irrelevant to the central story.

Meanwhile, throughout this enticing journey, readers will have to endure Seskis’s awkward writing style. Many of the sentences are long, rambling run-ons, which often serve as a distracting tangle to fight through in the midst of an otherwise captivating experience.

When it all comes to a head, the truth is definitely shocking—and absolutely heartbreaking, too. But some might feel tricked by the little games that Seskis played with her readers along the way, in order to keep them from putting the pieces together. When it’s over, you might be left wondering whether the storytelling was really clever…or just plain cruel.

Still, though the conclusion might be somewhat difficult to stomach, the rest of the experience is enjoyably alluring. So if you’re searching for a brief literary escape from your own life, this suspenseful short novel is worth exploring.


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