It was a story set in another time, when lovers wrote letters to one another. When, despite the romantic notion of love letters, there were still expectations and restrictions on one’s activities.
The Last Letter from Your Lover: A Novel begins in October 1960, and Jennifer Stirling, living in London with her wealthy husband Laurence, awakens in a hospital room, uncertain of who she is and what her life is about.
She has been in an accident, and she has no memory of it or what had happened to her before. When she leaves the hospital and goes home to her opulent mansion with a housekeeper to care for her, she recognizes some things, but there is an emotional disconnect between the facts she learns about her life and what she experiences.
Weaving back and forth between the summer of 1960, on the French Riviera, and the time after the accident, we slowly learn some of what has happened to Jennifer. But she has still been unable to piece together those events.
And then she finds a love letter in a book. Obviously written to her, but signed with the letter “B.” Who has written this letter? What was the nature of their relationship?
The great love affair between a journalist named Anthony O’Hare (nicknamed “Boot”), and the married Jennifer Stirling, is apparent to the reader right away, but the mystery of their lost love, what happened to the two of them, and the twists of fate that kept them from connecting was the ultimate love story searching for that happy ending.
Fast forward almost forty years, and we meet a young journalist named Ellie, who is trying to find the perfect feature story by searching in the archives. There she stumbles upon a file that has one love letter from 1960. She begins a quest to piece together what happened to the lovers…and at the same time, tries to sort out her own love life. The story kept me fully engaged throughout, and while there were some coincidences along the way that seemed a bit unrealistic, the predictable elements had just enough surprises to make me smile. 4.0 stars.