Our Review

‘Loving her felt like creating something. A cathedral. Spires and stained glass and bells. But she broke one window and I indiscriminately tore the whole thing down…’

With tears streaming down our cheeks, we want to give Suanne Laqueur a standing ovation and a big thank you for the privilege of experiencing this achingly compelling, stunningly written, powerful and incredibly moving series of which we’ll never forget. The dramatic threads of this story were so intrinsically and superbly woven by an author who gave us her all through heartbreaking, beautiful and inspiring words. Not just an epic love story, this was an epically remarkable story of life, love, loss, friendship, family and second chances.

“I don’t know what I’d do without you.
“You’ll never have to know.”

We found it hard to function whenever real life forced us to put this book down, anxious to continue Daisy and Erik’s story, caring for them so deeply it became that we were unable to focus on anything other than their journey.  To say it consumed us would be an understatement…we desperately wanted to pause life to sit, devour and savour every breathtakingly incredible word.

‘You can bury your pain or avoid it. You can tattoo over it. But you won’t be free of it until you feel it.’

There are books you read and enjoy; then there are the precious few, like The Fish Tales series which leave an indelible imprint on your heart, marking you as though you’ve actually lived and breathed the story along with the characters – such stories need to be treasured.  Honest, raw, intelligent and passionate, this series was so rich in detail, with such realistic dialogue we couldn’t help but become swept up in a story that was epic in every sense of the word and we will be treasuring this series.

‘She was a beautiful china cup on a table, quietly asking to be filled. And little by little, Erik was tipping over and pouring out.’

Suanne Laqueur laid the foundations of her story so meticulously and with such a wonderful simmering burn, taking her time to introduce her characters and in doing so ensured we came to know Erik, Daisy and their tight knit group of friends intimately. Knowing them on such a level meant we experienced every moment of their lives, the good, the bad and all the associated emotions as they unfolded. Honestly, when Erik and Daisy met for the first time, we were so invested in them as people we could feel the excited butterflies flutter in our stomachs as though we were right there witnessing the first gaze, feeling the first zap of chemistry between them. Although they would certainly test us and put our hearts through the wringer, our immense affection for these characters never wavered.

“What’s happening to us? We’re better than this.”
“We used to be.”

This is not a light read. It’s an intense, evocative, heartbreaking, frustrating, infuriating, joyful, romantic, passionate, tragic and deeply emotional story chronicling the lives, loves and destruction of characters who became our friends.  There were times their story crushed our hearts, times we were incensed, times we smiled, times we swooned, times we cried, but every single emotion was precious to us because to feel a story so implicitly is what reading is all about. It’s what keeps the passion burning.

‘Where once he’d been surprised to discover the depths of his passion, he was now equally astonished at how well he could shut down.’

We are introduced to Daisy and Erik as they meet at College in 1989. Erik was 19, Daisy 17, following them through to their 30’s bearing witness to the many tumultuous, happy, tragic, meaningful and life changing events throughout their lives.   Daisy and Erik shared a soul deep love that was etched in their hearts from the time they met, an unrestrained and obvious bond between; a true meeting of soulmates, a love that was as spiritual as it was physical and emotional.

‘Time was plentiful, a spilling basket of golden minutes and hours. Time was a gift from this girl who had waited for him to find her.’

The background setting of the theatre was so artfully and vividly brought to life, the dance aspect and how the interpretation of Daisy’s dancing techniques revealed to Erik so much of Daisy’s character was conveyed magnificently and breathtakingly so. We witnessed Daisy through Erik’s eyes and she was exquisite. The buzz of the theatre, the love of the dance, the heart rending love story, the true and deep friendships…it was all there for the taking and thanks to the brilliance of this author, we were held captive whilst embracing and feeling every moment.

“I know how to dance,” she said. “And I know how to love you.”

Erik and Daisy were in complete happiness, drinking in each other, their love, their friends, their families, their surroundings. Everything was falling into place until a life changing and traumatising event would rock their world, the aftermath causing a divide between them that would prove devastating to not only  them, but their close knit friends, having a profound effect on them all. Finding their way, healing and accepting would prove difficult and through the years observing them crumble under the weight of their pain, watching them spiral out of control –  making decisions that would affect the rest of their lives.

‘Nothing man-made was perfect. Not even massive churches. A partnership wasn’t about being beautiful and adored in the spotlight, it was about incorporating the mistakes into the architecture and continuing to build something beautiful. Together.’

When we came to the end of The Man I Love we were wrung out, our emotions raw and exposed feeling as though we needed some sort of closure immediately. It was for this reason we made the decision to head straight into Here To Stay leaving Give Me Your Answer True until our emotions were back in check.

“Leaving isn’t always the end of loving.”

Here to Stay wrecked us and put us back together. It was a perfect and fitting conclusion to Erik and Daisy’s journey but it wasn’t only that aspect that drew us in. The theme of friendship throughout this series was as every bit as meaningful and stirring as the gripping and potent love story between Erik and Daisy, with the relationship between Will and Erik being particularly fascinating and beautiful. Their story was a revelation and had us both agreeing it was one of the most heart-warming, heartbreakingly honest and beautiful relationships we’ve ever experienced.

We spent a weekend lost in Suanne Laqueur’s world, her intoxicating and arousing words eliciting such heartfelt emotion, with a finesse as enthralling as Daisy’s dance and as vividly stunning as any treasured painting. This isn’t merely a love story, it’s a sweeping saga of love, life, pain and healing.  We want to grab every reader and implore them to pick up this series! Brace your heart and lose yourself to love in all its many forms and we promise you will experience an unforgettable reading experience.

“Love can bring out the best and worst in us. We’ve all been a jackass for love. But love makes us do amazing things. And if love drives us away, love is what brings us back. Love makes up pick up the phone. Love makes us listen. Love makes us say I’m sorry. Love makes us forgive. Love makes us better. Love makes us our best. “

✲✲✲✲

Synopsis

THE FISH TALES SERIES

“Loving her felt like building something. A cathedral. Spires and bells and stained glass. But she broke one window and I indiscriminately tore the whole thing down.”

Spanning fifteen years, Suanne Laqueur’s award-winning series follows a young man’s emotional journey back to the truth of himself and a woman he can’t forget.

Erik “Fish” Fiskare is a student of technical theatre at a Philadelphia university. At twenty-two, he is the lover and soul mate of Daisy Bianco, a beautiful and talented ballerina. His best friend is William Kaeger, Daisy’s charismatic, bisexual partner. When Will embarks on a disastrous affair, it pushes Erik’s tolerance and Daisy’s trust to the limit. Until the day Will’s lover brings a gun to rehearsal, intent on stopping the show.

“This was the real story. This was how it started. Not with locked eyes during romance and sex, but with blood. With locked eyes in a crisis. Helping even though it hurt. Making your fingers let go even as your heart was breaking. To do what you had to do to survive so the story could go on being told.”

The three novels of The Fish Tales explore how a single act of violence sends shock waves through a tight-knit circle of adolescent friends, rearranging their atoms, breaking bonds and unconsciously shaping their adult lives. Erik soon discovers that in the face of heartache, grief and betrayal, love is not always enough to make you stay. But sometimes, it’s the only thing that can bring you back.

“She’s a generous and forgiving partner. I can be one, too.”

From college to adulthood, through love and loss, devotion and betrayal, estrangement and forgiveness, Erik and Daisy will take you on an emotional journey of love and truth.

“At some point, Fish, you just have to start living the truth of who you are and what you feel. You never forgave, forgot or got over Daisy. You just left.”

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