Monday, February 8, 2021

Review - The Truth About Melody Browne

:   The Truth About Melody Browne
Author:  Lisa Jewell
Genre:   Women's Fiction
Publisher:   Pocket Books
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:  352
Date of Publication:  January 26, 2021
(originally published January 31, 2009)
My Rating:   3 Stars


This “touching, insightful, and gripping story” (Sophie Kinsella, #1 New York Times bestselling author) from the instant New York Times bestselling author of Then She Was Gone follows a young woman searching for answers about her unknown past and the mysterious fire that irrevocably changed her life.

When she was a child, Melody Browne’s house burned down, destroying all her family’s possessions and her memories. Ever since this tragic event, Melody Browne has had no recollection of her life before she was rescued from the flames.

Now in her early thirties, Melody is a single mother, living in the middle of London with her teenaged son. She hasn’t seen her parents since she left home at fifteen, but Melody has no desire to reconnect until one night, while attending a hypnotist show with a date, she faints. When she comes around, she is suddenly overwhelmed with fragmented memories of her life before that fateful fire.

Slowly, she begins the arduous process of piecing together the real story of her childhood. Her journey takes her up and down the countryside, to seaside towns to the back streets of London, where she meets strangers who seem to love her like her own. But the more answers she uncovers, the more questions she is left with, and Melody can’t help but wonder if she’ll ever know the whole truth about her past.

“An absolute must-read” (Cosmopolitan, UK), The Truth About Melody Browne “will make you laugh, cry—then tell all your friends about it” (Daily Record).


Melody Browne led a tumultuous childhood. From ages 4 - 7 her life had upheaval after upheaval. However, she experienced such great tragedy that she lost her memory. There was a fire that changed Melody's life forever when she was quite young, but as an adult she has no memory at all of those years.

This story is told in dual time-lines. We meet Melody as a precocious young child whose parents are living on different continents. While dedicated to her mother, who definitely has problems that Melody could in no way understand, she longs for her father. She does get the opportunity to spend a couple of weeks with him, along with his new partner and her new baby sister. This is the life Melody longs for. However, she goes back home to her mother and things go from bad to worse.

The story jumps ahead to Melody in her mid-thirties. She is a single parent to a teenaged son. An experience with a hypnotist shakes her world. The memories long since lost come back to her. So Melody begins to dig and dig for the source of those memories, and for anyone that was connected to her when she was young. 

I have been enjoying a few of Lisa Jewell's books these past couple of years. so when this book came available on NetGalley, I swooped it up. I did not realize that it was a re-release, so I am glad for the opportunity. This book was good, had strong drama, but had a different edge from the other books I have read by her.

Many thanks to Pocket Books and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Lisa was born in London in 1968. Her mother was a secretary and her father was a textile agent and she was brought up in the northernmost reaches of London with her two younger sisters. She was educated at a Catholic girls’ Grammar school in Finchley. After leaving school at sixteen she spent two years at Barnet College doing an arts foundation course and then two years at Epsom School of Art & Design studying Fashion Illustration and Communication.

She worked for the fashion chain Warehouse for three years as a PR assistant and then for Thomas Pink, the Jermyn Street shirt company for four years as a receptionist and PA. She started her first novel, Ralph’s Party, for a bet in 1996. She finished it in 1997 and it was published by Penguin books in May 1998. It went on to become the best-selling debut novel of that year.

She has since written a further nine novels, as is currently at work on her eleventh.

She now lives in an innermost part of north London with her husband Jascha, an IT consultant, her daughters, Amelie and Evie and her silver tabbies, Jack and Milly.


  1. I’m intrigued by this and since you’ve enjoyed this author before, would like to see what her other works are and how they are different.

  2. I don't think I've ever noticed you giving a book 3-stars. Yet your review is positive. You have enviable skills!

  3. I love the cover of this, great review

  4. Great review, sorry this one wasn't as strong as your other normal reads but good to hear you did like some of it.

  5. I was surprised to see a 3 star review from you.