Ghosted (Walsh)

The Man Who Didn't Call (UK)
Rosie Walsh, 2018
Penguin Publising
352 pp.

Seven perfect days. Then he disappeared. A love story with a secret at its heart.

When Sarah meets Eddie, they connect instantly and fall in love. To Sarah, it seems as though her life has finally begun.

And it's mutual: It's as though Eddie has been waiting for her, too. Sarah has never been so certain of anything. So when Eddie leaves for a long-booked vacation and promises to call from the airport, she has no cause to doubt him. But he doesn't call.

Sarah's friends tell her to forget about him, but she can't. She knows something's happened--there must be an explanation.

Minutes, days, weeks go by as Sarah becomes increasingly worried. But then she discovers she's right. There is a reason for Eddie's disappearance, and it's the one thing they didn't share with each other: the truth. (From the publisher.)

Author Bio
Where—Stroud, Glouscestershire, England, UK
Currently—lives in Bristol, England

Rosie Walsh is a British documentary film maker and the author of several novels, four of which she wrote under the pen name Lucy Robinson. The fifth, Ghosted (UK: The Man Who Didn't Call), was published in 2018 under her real name.

Walsh grew up in the British countryside, in a small cottage in Gloucestershire, with her family and a band of what she refers to as "delinquent" animals. Long before she became a writer, Walsh attempted to become an actor. But when it was suggested in college (kindly we hope) that she wasn't particularly good, she ended up behind the scenes: writing and producing, first in TV broadcasting in London, later filming documentaries around the globe.

In 2009 Walsh turned to writing, but not to fiction—rather for her blog on the Marie Claire website. Her writing, however, caught the eye of a book editor who encouraged her try her hand at a novel. And so off to Buenos Aires, Walsh went ("like you do" she quips) to attempt her first book. A year later she had a published novel under her belt: The Greatest Love Story of All Times. Three more novels followed—A Passionate Love Affair With a Total Stranger (2012), The Unfinished Symphony of You and Me (2014), and The Day We Disappeared (2015)—all four works were under the pseudonym, Lucy Robinson.

In 2018, she published a fifth novel, this one as Rosie Walsh: Ghosted (The Man Who Didn't Call, UK).

Oh, and while working on that first novel in Argentina, the one with the British title, The Man Who Didn't Call? Well, she met the love of her life, and he did call. The two are now living in Bristol, England, with their son. (Adapted from the author's Lucy Robinson website and the publisher.)

Book Reviews
Walsh has a good ear for dialogue, and the mystery behind Eddie's disappearance is a particularly satisfying one.
Tina Jordan - New York Times Book Review

A gripping and surprising romantic suspense story.… You won't want to put it down.

Walsh’s bittersweet debut tackles the perils of modern dating.… Though the ending comes abruptly, this tale of heartbreak will please readers who enjoy a good twist.
Publishers Weekly

[A]n intricate story of mystery, deception, grief, and forgiveness that begins slowly and builds steam as the plot twists and turns, and steers clear of predictability.… [T]his novel will have readers ready to go back and reread it from the start.
Library Journal

(Starred review) A perfectly paced domestic drama centered on two lovely, lonesome people, Ghosted is a brilliant debut novel that explores the power of fate.… Walsh has a gift for blending complex characters, intricate backstories, and neck-snapping plot twists.

[T]ension quickly amps up…. Walsh has created a deeply moving romance with an intriguing mystery and a touching portrait of grief at its heart.A romantic, sad, and ultimately hopeful book that's perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes.
Kirkus Reviews

A cleverly plotted romantic thriller filled with scandalous twists and turns and a juicy central mystery, Ghosted proves impossible to put down.… Deliciously addictive, surprising and sentimental.

Discussion Questions
1. Assuming you have been in Sarah’s situation and have been ghosted—and, let’s face it, who hasn’t?—how did it make you feel? How did you react?

2. If you were Sarah’s friend, what advice would you have given her? Is there any point in giving advice to someone who believes she is in love?

3. The practice of disappearing to avoid telling someone you’re not interested is not new, but it has become more prevalent in the digital age. How has modern technology made ghosting worse?

4. In Eddie’s shoes, could you have forgiven Sarah? Could you have just "let it go" because you were deeply in love?

5. Did you feel that Eddie and Sarah were meant to be after their seven days together? Or was it the lost potential of the relationship that left Sarah so devastated? Is love at first sight—or close to first sight—possible?

6. Both Sarah and Eddie had to deal with the loss of someone dear to them; while Eddie stayed put, Sarah left as soon as she could. How did their expressions of grief differ?

7. Why do you think Jo and Tommy kept their relationship secret? Would you have done the same in their position?

8. Could you understand Eddie’s choice at the end of the book, or did you feel that he should have put his mother’s needs first?

9. Sarah is determined not to let her personal life affect her business. Can working with your ex ever lead to success? Would you be able to do it? Did you find Reuben’s professional conduct to be unacceptable, or did you feel that he was just deeply in love and no more able to control his behavior around Kaia than Sarah was with Eddie?

10. The ability—or inability—to forgive defines many of the characters in the book: from Eddie’s mother’s resistance to moving on, to Sarah’s inability to forgive herself, to Eddie’s crucial final decision on which the entire story hangs. Is it important to be able to forgive? Or are there some things that can never be excused?
(Questions issued by the publishers.)

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