What’s the betting that you are reading this on your phone? Am I correct? What was the first thing you did this morning when you woke up? I am going to guess that it was (apart from opening your eyes) checking your phone? Yes? Am I right? How many times a day do you check your phone or find yourself mindlessly scrolling with no real purpose? Multiple? Yes? Then boy do I have the book for you dear readers!
Today it is my turn on the blog tour to review Ideal Angels By Robert Welbourn, published by Unbound. Thank you as always for my copy to review and also to Anne for the invite to take part in this tour. Always appreciated. Let’s get started!
About The Author
Robert Welbourn is Yorkshire born and bred – he’s lived there almost all his life, and now written a book set there. He’s had a passion for books as long as he can remember, and has been writing his whole life. His favourite authors are Bret Easton Ellis and Stephen King, and he cites Ellis as his number one influence.
He studied English Literature at Salford University, and this confirmed that he wanted to spend his life working with books. He currently works in marketing, but is hoping to spend his life telling stories.
Is it possible to keep secrets in the age of social media? When someone lives their entire life in the spotlight, what could they possibly hide from you? Ideal Angels explores just that. It’s the story of one man, one woman, one week. They meet, fall in love, and never look back. Eloise’s phone is never far away, furiously cataloguing their ups and downs. But there are always shadows, lurking just out of reach. The moments after the camera flashes, unseen, uncaptured. The threat of an inescapable doom. How much can one person change you? How much can one person be your downfall?
In a world where screens and social media dominate our lives it is hard to be invisible. Wherever you go there are people glued to their phones taking photos, updating statuses and checking in. We live in a world where our privacy settings are public and we share every single detail about our life online. What we had for breakfast, what we are watching on Netflix; an endless list of mundane information that we feel needs to be told. Welbourn uses this to his advantage in Ideal Angels and sets in motion a modern-day love story showing the reader how much of their relationship revolves around the internet. The reader follows the ups and downs, all the while wondering if these two characters with such a different view on social media can really last. I couldn’t stop reading until I knew their fate. I was hooked. Welbourn writes in such a way that you sympathise with the main character (who is unnamed) you want him to be happy and for his relationship to work out. Because it is written in the second person you feel as though you are him, feeling all these emotions, living his life. You feel connected.
We all want to be loved, it’s human nature. It means a lot to us to be liked online because it simulates and to some, signifies that we are wanted, we are needed. A message Welbourn demonstrates to the reader within the story and characters. This constant need to be approved and accepted can have devastating effects that could end up destroying you if you allow it to spiral out of control.
“You wonder how many takeaways will end up on the internet tonight, how many people think that other people care what they’re eating, how many people like other people’s food hoping for reciprocation, how much time that could be spent with friends, lovers, spent doing something great, spent changing the world, will be wasted bragging about nothing online.”
Welbourn cleverly throws the main character and Eloise together: Eloise, who is a walking advertisement of how much this generation live on social media. Two complete opposites, yet it works beautifully. The main character can see some of the benefits to being present online yet also wants to keep some things private. It’s a push and pull power struggle that keeps the reader on edge. Brilliantly done and the end result is heartbreaking.
With themes of depression, alcoholism and addiction Wellbourn portrays a realistic view of the world. It’s raw, fresh and intoxicating. He pulls the reader into the crazed social media hype and shows them how much it has taken over. It’s scary and questions the reader as to why do they choose to do this. To escape online instead of disconnecting and living a life without wifi. Are we even capable of doing this or have we as humans evolved to heavily rely on the use of technology?
“So much of life is spent waiting, watching screens while watching time pass, so much time spent doing so very little. It’s become a part of your condition, a part of you, of who you are.”
I enjoyed how this book made me question myself, if we all realise that we live two separate lives. Online and offline. They are drastically different as our online life is picture prefect, we present only the good and what we want people to see. Our offline deals with everything else that we can’t edit out so we conceal it, not allowing it to come into contact with our online life in fear of rejection. The rose-tinted glasses are removed from the reader and they begin to re-evaluate their purpose in life.
The ending ruined me, I was a blubbing mess. I also found it painfully ironic. Without giving away any spoilers, it’s heart-wrenching and makes you see that maybe sometimes you need to capture those moments, to be able to see and feel how happy you were. You will be immortal online, frozen in love.
I give Ideal Angels By Robert Welbourn a Four out of Five star rating.
I loved this book and highly recommend it to everyone! We need to start seeing what the world has become around us. So start by getting off your phone and go do something that is real, that means something. Need some help figuring out where to start? Buy a copy of Ideal Angels and get reading! Feed your mind with books and reading. It’s a beautiful place to be.
Don’t forget to check out the rest of the blog tour. Dates below. Enjoy.
Buy a copy on Amazon
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