Monday, 20 January 2020

Book Review: Saving Missy by Beth Morrey #BRPreview

Saving Missy
Beth Morrey

Publisher: Harper Collins Australia
Imprint: HarperCollins -  GB
Publication date: 20th January 2020
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Pages: 384
RRP: $29.99AUD
Format read: Uncorrected paperback
Source: Courtesy of the publisher via Better Reading

The world has changed around Missy Carmichael. At seventy-nine, she's estranged from her daughter, her son and only grandson live across the world in Australia, and her great love is gone. Missy spends her days with a sip of sherry, scrubbing the kitchen in her big empty house and reliving her past--though it's her mistakes, and secrets, that she allows to shine brightest. The last thing Missy expects is for two perfect strangers and one spirited dog to break through her prickly exterior and show Missy just how much love she still has to give. Filled with wry laughter and deep insights into the stories we tell ourselves, The Love Story of Missy Carmichael shows us it's never too late to teach an old dog new tricks. It's never too late to love

Missy Carmichael is an elderly widow feeling the desolate loneliness of a large empty house now that her husband is no longer with her and her two children have moved on with their lives. Son Alistair is living in Australia and keeps in touch via email but Missy is finding it hard to have anything interesting to email about. Whilst her daughter, Melanie, lives closer their relationship is strained after an argument and they very rarely have contact.

There are flashbacks of a young Missy and the high profile life she had with her college professor husband. There are also hints of a terrible secret that Missy has been burdened with throughout her life.

I immediately felt sympathetic towards Missy’s situation but as you get to know her you can see she is quite a negative person with words like impostor, fraud, fuddy-duddy often peppering her thoughts. She had a habit of judging people by their appearance and I think she thought other people were judging her as she was frequently humiliated, embarrassed or mortified in public.

When Missy meets the exuberant Angela and her young son Otis I was sure Angela was only looking for a babysitter. She then introduces Missy to designer and fellow dog-walker Sylvie who soon makes her way into Missy’s home and life. It was easy at the start to think the worst of these two bossy and extrovert characters but meeting them proved to be the best thing that happened to Missy.
Maggie and Sylvie take Missy in hand and show her that life is to be lived.

Saving Missy is a beautifully written, heart-felt story about friendship, opening yourself up to new experiences and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone.
I really enjoyed the way Missy slowly opened up and changed, proving you are never too old to change, grow and make new friends.


My rating  5/5

Beth Morrey was inspired to write her debut novel, Saving Missy, while pushing a pram around her local park during maternity leave. Getting to know the community of dog owners, joggers, neighbours and families, she began to sow the seeds of a novel about a woman saved by the people around her, strangers who became friends.Previously Creative Director at RDF Television, Beth now writes full time. She was previously shortlisted for the Grazia-Orange First Chapter award, and had her work published in the Cambridge and Oxford May Anthologies while at university.Beth lives in London with her husband, two sons and a dog named Polly. 




  1. I'm glad this was good, I forgot this was out today. I'll get the kindle out and read it.

  2. Ohhhh this sounds lovely (I'm always here for older women represented in fiction!), but you've terrified me with the mention of a spirited dog! I'm banned from reading books that feature dogs because, almost inevitably, something bad happens to them and it always breaks me... would it be safe for me to read?? (Obviously no need to confirm if it's too spoilery to say haha) 😅

    1. In the event of not wanting you to be broken by this book...don't read.

  3. Nice to see a book about a older person. Great review.

    1. I'm starting to see more books featuring older characters. Especially older woman.

  4. I've never heard of this book, but the cover is gorgeous. Unfortunately based on your reply to the comment about dogs and sad things with dogs breaking people, I will NOT be able to read this one.

  5. This looks lovely and I really like the cover.

  6. I found this one Netgalley as The Love Story of Missy Carmichael and put in my request - fingers crossed as this sounds divine!

  7. Ooo sounds good, lovely review

  8. I'm not sure this one is for me, but I'm glad you enjoyed it!

  9. Aaawww, I love reading about all the characters every once in a while.