Elizabeth Egan’s life runs on order: Both her home and her emotions are arranged just so, with little room for spontaneity. It’s how she counteracts the chaos of her family — an alcoholic mother who left when she was young, an emotionally distant father, and a free-spirited sister, who seems to be following in their mother’s footsteps, leaving her own six-year-old son, Luke, in Elizabeth’s care. When Ivan, Luke’s mysterious new grown-up friend, enters the picture, Elizabeth doesn’t know quite what to make of him. With his penchant for adventure and colorful take on things large and small, Ivan opens Elizabeth’s eyes to a whole new way of living. But is it for real? Is Ivan for real?
My thoughts on the novel: For many years, I have been a huge fan of Cecelia Ahern’s books. They’re always full of hope and love, all wrapped up with some magical pixie dust. In this regard, the novel “If you could see me now” is in keeping with the author’s signature writing style.
However, I must admit that it took me a long while to really take to this story. There were some lengthy passages that made it difficult to remain focused and interested.
I thought it took a bit too long to set out the context, the characters and their personalities.
To be fair, the core plot/storyline is quite interesting. It’s about the role of imaginary friends in the life of children… and adults! Out of the blue, Ivan becomes visible to an adult Elizabeth whose life is rather deprived of magic and enchantment. She’s been through quite a family ordeal from a mother walking out on her, her troubled sister who keeps storming in and out of their lives, and her complex father.
It was witty to introduce a character like Ivan into Elizabeth’s life to help her put her move on and strive for real happiness.
I thought the style was true to Ahern’s most famous books. I actually really enjoyed the final chapters that I found poetic and lovely.
Although this novel isn’t one of my favourite from Ahern, it’s still worth reading it because of the message it conveys about hope, friendship and happiness.
My Score : ♥ ♥ (= I liked it)