The Art of Hiding

The Art of Hiding

by Amanda Prowse

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781611099553
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 08/22/2017
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Amanda Prowse likens her own life story to those she writes about in her books. After self-publishing her debut novel, Poppy Day, in 2011, she has gone on to author sixteen novels and six novellas. Her books have been translated into a dozen languages and she regularly tops bestseller charts all over the world.

Remaining true to her ethos, Amanda writes stories of ordinary women and their families who find their strength, courage and love tested in ways they never imagined. The most prolific female contemporary fiction writer in the UK, with a legion of loyal readers, she goes from strength to strength. Being crowned ‘queen of domestic drama’ by the Daily Mail was one of her finest moments.

Amanda is a regular contributor on TV and radio but her first love is and will always be writing.

You can find her online at www.amandaprowse.com, on Twitter @MrsAmandaProwse, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/amandaprowsenogreaterlove.

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The Art of Hiding 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 22 reviews.
_NormaJean More than 1 year ago
What do you do when everything you have ever counted on falls apart? Nina is living the life she always wanted with her husband and her two boys. When her husband is killed in a car wreck, Nina feels like her world has ended, but she must find a way to go on for the boys’ sake. When her husband’s will is read, she discovers that things were not as they seemed. Nina had never worked outside the home. She had grown up poor, but after meeting and marrying Finn she wanted for nothing. When Finn dies, everything starts to fall apart one piece at a time. This is a story of a very strong woman in a very bad situation. Nina has to keep it together for the sake of her boys. She vows to do whatever she has to do to provide for them. I recommend this book to anyone who likes a protagonist who refuses to give up. I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Ejaygirl More than 1 year ago
Nina McCarrick’s life literally changed overnight when her husband died in a car accident. He was a successful building contractor and sole provider for his wife and two sons. Though Nina came from extremely humble beginnings, her sons had never known anything but a highly affluent lifestyle. And, she’s not worked in almost twenty years and now faces destitution because of the financial ruin left by her dead husband. It’s often said you don’t know what you’re made of until you’re tested and Nina certainly gets her share of exams. She only has a short amount of time to bury her head in the sand before she has to deal with her sons’ well being. I felt the stages she went through were realistic, especially as she also had to look inward to examine her own contribution to her circumstances. I loved her sister, Tiggy, who served as her reality check about herself. Nina’s metamorphosis was laudable without being trite. Her accomplishments were fitting and her children’s reactions and behaviors were true to the design of their characters. This is a tough story that I found myself cringing from at times but always engaged. Nina’s triumph and those of her children lifted my spirit. There are no trick devices here, just an honest portrayal of a woman pulling herself up by her bootstraps when life threw her in the ditch.
Tracey_L More than 1 year ago
This book had a good premise, and I was prepared to get involved in a fairly dramatic story, but in the end was left feeling unimpressed. The author didn't invite us in to get to really know her characters, so everything that happened felt only surface deep. There was no connection built and the story suffers for it. The interactions also often felt unnatural, and the conversations felt stilted. Overall, it was a bit disappointing and I walked away dissatisfied.
Suze-Lavender More than 1 year ago
Nina has everything she ever dreamed of when she was a little girl. She has a loving husband and two sons, she's living in a nice big house and she never has to worry about money. Her world shatters when Finn dies and leaves her with nothing but debt. Nina had no idea his business was in trouble and that Finn owed so many people such a lot of money. She has to find a new home, so they will have a roof over their heads and can't keep her sons Connor and Declan away from the misery their father left any longer, they have to give up the lifestyle they're used to and they have to go to a different school. Nina's sister finds them a place to stay at a council estate that isn't in a very good state. How will her sons, who have only lived in luxury, react? Nina never thought she'd have to move back into her childhood neighborhood, but that's the reality of her situation. Putting food on the table is a challenge all of a sudden. She has to find a job, but that proves to be more difficult than she initially thought. Finn was a protective husband and didn't see the need for Nina to have a career when he earned so much money, so she doesn't have an education or any work experience. However, they do need to eat and Nina has to do something. She has to learn to rely on herself instead of others, because there's nobody to rescue her this time. Will she and her boys be all right? The Art of Hiding is a beautiful story about family, starting over and money. Nina is in a bad situation. Finn never told her about the problems he was having with his company, so when he dies she's being left with an unexpected mess on top of her grief. My heart ached for everything she has to go through and I loved the way Amanda Prowse describes her pain and despair. Nina doesn't know how to take care of her own finances and at first she's numb, but she soon realizes that she is the one in charge and she has Connor and Declan to take care of. It was amazing to see this transformation, slowly she becomes the person who has to take full control in her own life, which is a fabulous powerful subject. Amanda Prowse writes about money issues in a great honest way. I was immediately captivated by Nina's story. Even though she lives in a big house with plenty of stuff and can buy anything she likes her life is empty. Having money doesn't mean having a fulfilled life and that is a lesson Nina has to learn the hard way. I couldn't put her story down, I was impressed by the way Amanda Prowse explores Nina's emotional turmoil and loved the journey from chaos to control. The Art of Hiding is another terrific story by Amanda Prowse and I highly recommend it, just like any of her other stories.
Rag_Doll More than 1 year ago
The Art of Hiding is a stand alone novel (not part of any series) and is a beautifully written, very emotional story of loss, family coming together and seeing light at the end of the tunnel. Nina is watching her son, Connor, play rugby at his very expensive school. She's a step away from the other parents because she doesn't quite fit in. She has the stylish clothes and drives the right car but she isn't one of them. At that moment, she gets a phone call from a hospital doctor informing her that her husband, Finn, has been involved in an accident and to get to the hospital right away. Devastated Nina's life starts crumbling around her. The place she calls home, the cars, jewellery – all of it, is a castle in the sky. With little more than the clothes she could pack in a box, she and her two boys flee to her childhood town, right back at square one with small pokey rooms and cast off furniture. But, she has her sister Tiggy living close by. Nina and Tiggy learn a few home truths about each other and Nina's sons, Connor and Declan, learn to live without the luxury of modern accessories. Life is hard, really hard, but Nina is strong and has to pull this off because she has two boys relying on her. There is an unwritten cloud of suspicion hanging over Finn's accident and it's interesting to see how much mother and son think along the same lines but neither will actually say it out loud. Amanda Prowse has a lovely way of dropping values and morals into her stories and focuses on the importance of family, love and happiness. She puts life into perspective and her characters get to take a good look at themselves for what they have and what they are. Yes, there's a lot of sadness and grief in this book but by the end there is a feeling of accomplishment and promise.
sandrabrazier More than 1 year ago
Nina McCarrick is living the dream. Wealthy, with two sons enrolled in a prestigious private school, a huge country home, and an attractive and wonderful husband, Nina fills her days with caring for her home and family. One day, the unthinkable happens, and everything changes. Nina is forced into a totally different lifestyle, one in which she discovers her true self and what she really wants from life. This is a nice book, in that it reveals what is really important to have a happy life. Sadly, I found the story slow-moving. I was waiting for something more profound to happen, but it never did. Don’t get me wrong, our author developed her characters and wrote well. It just seemed like this tale was a bit empty, lacking. I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review.
Senoj More than 1 year ago
It's easy to overlook life's responsibilities when they're filed away in someone else's "to-do" box, but what happens when life dumps the box out onto your lap? Nina lives a fairytale life in a mega-fancy home situated in an idyllic setting. Her husband vowed to take care of her and their two sons, who attend a posh private school and are on the fast track to a glorious future. But when a car crash turns their world upside down, Nina finds out more than she ever wanted to know. Life is a mess. An incredible, devastating, horrendously surprising mess. Even Nina's own bad decisions from the past come knocking and the nightmare she's hoping to wake from only grows bigger by the day. And solutions are not always pretty. This story is one no woman wants to experience, in fact, most don't even want to admit that the reality of this situation exists. But they do. If you don't want to hear that a woman/wife/mother has frailties, even naiveties, then don't read this book. If, however, you are a realist and understand that others may have lives different from your own, then by all means pick up this book. It's written well and tells a story that will linger with you. I'm glad I read it and I'll be watching for more books written by this author. This novel was provided to me by NetGallery in exchange for an honest review.
Lisa Hardy More than 1 year ago
I had never read anything by Amanda Prowse before but knew lots of people had so I was looking forward to reading this. When I started reading it, I just thought it was going to be a read about posh and privileged people and wasn't sure I was going to like the characters. How did I come to that conclusion after reading just a few chapters? I don't know. Call it an over active imagination and a very good reason why I'm a reader and not an author! Well needless to say, I was completely wrong and couldn't have been further from the truth. I really enjoyed how the author gave an underlying strength to Nina, the main character. A woman who despite what life threw at her remained steadfast and a great support to her boys, Connor and Declan. Then bring in her Sister to the mix, a character who was the complete opposite to Nina and who was somewhat estranged from the family but still there in the background. I loved her Joie de Vivre and positive outlook. She was just the write character to boost Nina up. The way the Author merged Nina's totally different lives together made it a fascinating read. I was willing Nina on and hoping that her life would end up being all that she wanted it to be. The challenges Ms Prowse put in Nina's way kept me page turning with enthusiasm and I couldn't put the book down. She has written some really great characters in this book and shows how someone can triumph over adversity. This is well worth a read and I will definite check out the authors other books. Thanks to NetGalley for providing me with a copy to read in exchange for my honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A story about lIfe and how you react to all the conflicts ,lost A mother with 2sons who suddenly lose her husband and life as she knew it.
ForTheArtOfIt More than 1 year ago
There is something so real and raw and authentic about the characters in Prowse's work. This is the second of her books I've read this year. She went on my favorite author list after completing The Idea of You earlier this spring; her spot is cemented after reading this book. Nina loses her husband unexpectedly due to a car crash and before she can fully comprehend that he isn't coming home, she learns that not only is the stronghold of their family unit gone, they entire life system is gone and she must figure out how to survive. With two sons, she can't hide in bed as she desires - instead, Nina digs deep and finds a source of strength and aptitude to take each day and fight to provide stability and security for her sons, Conner and Declan as they each seek to find a new normal while grieving in their own individual ways. Nina loves flowers and there is one scene where her teenage son left a mason jar of dandelions on the counter for her to cheer her up one evening. Everything leading up to that moment was so intense - I could not help crying as I read that (it even makes me teary eyed now). I love how the book begins with Nina's insecurity and anxieties and ends with her so strong and determined and a real sense of knowing what she is capable of. I highly recommend this book. It is on my Best of 2017 list. I would like to thank NetGalley and Lake Union Publishing for allowing me to review an eARC of this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I wasn't sure what this was all about, but it seemed interesting, so I jumped on the chance to read something different. The book is good overall, a bit over descriptive in parts, but overall a very good story. Nina lives in a rich, over protective bubble made by her husband, Finn. Her sons go to a private school have everything they think they want. Then one day, it all comes crashing down on them when Finn dies in a car accident. Nina must make some sudden decisions and them move back to where she grew up. I found myself tearing up many times during this book as I traversed the year with Nina and her boys. I absolutely loved the story, and I would have given it 5 stars, but she was overly wordy and it kinda took away from the story.
DubaiReader1 More than 1 year ago
"I thought I had more time" As a reviewer I have praised books for plot, for characterisations and for descriptions of surroundings, this book made me realise that I needed to add another category: emotion. The author had me right from the start as she described exactly how it would feel to lose a beloved husband, then watch, as the life you thought was yours, splintered before your eyes, until you weren't even sure you knew that husband at all. Unfortunately though, Nina McCarrick couldn't just hide under the covers, she had two very sad boys to bring through this catastrophe with her. I really felt for Nina at every turn and Ms Prowse perfectly describes the dilemma between Nina's own emotions and her love for her boys, who needed her support more than ever. She is forced to return to a downtrodden area of Southampton and struggle to do everything she could to restart their lives together. Her sons, Connor, who's 15, and 10 year old Declan, are great kids (thankfully) and Declan, in particular, has an upbeat attitude and a quirky sense of humour: 'I don't mind where we live, Mum, but I don't want to go anywhere really cold, like the North Pole.' (loc 1906). The boys must make the difficult move from a private school to the state system. I know someone who did this and it's not easy. My one criticism of this book would be the portrayal of the wealthy people who had children at the private school were Connor and Declan had studied since early childhood. Some wealthy people are very nice, honestly. But Nina's circle were the meanest, self serving people I've ever come across! I actually read this book without looking at the synopsis, which in my opinion, gives too much away. Of the three Amanda Prowse books I've read, this was definitely my favourite. Also read: The Food of Love (4.5 stars) Poppy Day (4 stars)
Jolie More than 1 year ago
I have never thought about the “what ifs” of my relationship. I never thought of “what if my SO died“. I also never thought of “What if he was hiding debt from me“. After reading The Art of Hiding, I did start thinking about the “what ifs” and discussed them with him. Luckily for me, he is not the type to hide anything from me. I am also not the type of person, like Nina, who is not involved in any of the household finances. So, if something did happen, nothing would blindside me like it did Nina. The plot of The Art of Hiding is Finn dying, Nina finding out about the debt and Nina going back to Southampton. A place she escaped from when she married Finn. But, there is also the plotline where Nina finds herself and that is what made this book so enjoyable for me. Nina had to go through so much to be happy. Her journey to get to that point was both heartbreaking and uplifting at the same time. While this book is labeled as women’s fiction, it is not chick lit. I can’t stress that enough. In my eyes, women’s fiction is a huge step away from chick lit. In chick lit, the heroine deals with whatever life throws at her in unrealistic ways. In women fiction, the heroine deals with life’s trials as a normal person would. This is what I liked about The Art of Hiding. Nina’s issues are something that could happen to anyone. The situations that she finds herself in has happened to people in real life. It is that connection that made me like this book. Nina had a lifestyle that most people only dreamed about. She had a beautiful house and expensive cars. Her children went to an exclusive all boys school. She took vacations to exotic locations. I mean, she had a lifestyle that I wished I had. Then Finn died and her world crumbled. She finds out that he was in debt and that everything is being repossessed. Not only the house and cars but everything inside the house. Her boys were kicked out the exclusive school due to nonpayment of tuition. She did what anyone would do in that situation, she reached out to her sister for h help. With her sister’s help, she packed up what she could and moved back to Southampton. She moved into the flat (apartment) that her great-aunt had occupied and she tried to get back on her feet. I could go on and criticize why Nina seemed to falter in the middle of the book. I could but I won’t. If I were in her shoes, I would have gone into shock too. I mean, within days, she was homeless and had no money. She could not wrap her head around what happened. Guess what, she deserved to wallow in her grief and anger for a bit. The only thing that was keeping her going were her sons. She had to be strong for them because, guess what, their world shattered too. They lost their father, all their possessions and their house. The end of the book was heartbreaking and happy. I had tears in my eyes when Nina reflected on her year and how far she had come. **I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**
Meemo_B More than 1 year ago
This was the first book book I’ve read by Amanda Prowse, but it won’t be the last. The rags-to-riches-to-rags (“rags” may be a slight overstatement) was curiously satisfying for me. I say curiously because I don’t always enjoy this type of story. But the combination of the double-whammy of the blows Nina suffered (the death of her husband, closely followed by the realization he’d gone bankrupt and hadn’t told her) ended up being very engaging for me. While at times it felt like she was a bit too plucky, at the same time I appreciated that that’s what good moms do - we suck it up for our kids, put the best face on things, apologize when we realize we’ve screwed up, and keep on loving them when our teen-aged darlings are being…shall we say, less than lovable. Most important, we do whatever we can to protect them and provide for them. Overall Nina felt quite real and human to me. She was thrown into such a difficult situation, and had to deal with that while coming to some uncomfortable realizations about her husband and their life together. In the end, I felt like I knew where it was ultimately going, but I still enjoyed the journey. Copy provided by Netgalley and Lake Union Publishing in exchange for an unbiased review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I received this book from Netgalley in return for an honest review. I am a big fan of Amanda Prowse and this book was up there with her best. I loved and believed in all the characters with the exception of Finn, the deceased husband. I really couldn't make up my mind if he was an out and out baddie, someone who just wanted the best for his family or a real control freak, whatever he was, I didn't like him. Nina, his widow, however, is another of Amanda Prowse's strong female characters although she herself doesn't believe it initially. Although at times the novel was necessarily bleak, Toothless Vera and sometimes even lovely little Declan did provide some comic relief. The novel was set in what is now my part of the world and when that happens I don't think I'm alone when I'm almost looking to catch the author out. Geographically, I couldn't, but I did find it hard to believe that such a fantastic care home for the elderly was within walking distance of the house in the back streets of Southampton. However, Nina was by this time pretty impoverished and needing to save on fares as well as everything else, so what she and I might consider 'walking distance' may well differ. This is a compelling story with a strong moral feeling much needed in this overly materialistic, throw away society that we live in nowadays; money cannot buy happiness, this point gave me, although I am not overly affluent, a lot of food for thought, what would I be prepared to give up for a life of comfort? Following on was the fact that at the end of the day we are all, each and everyone one of us, equals, no-one has the right to look down on those who have less in terms of worldly goods. I felt that maybe the ending came together a little too neatly (although I have to admit to shedding quite a few tears) especially with regards Tiggy and her new beau (too convenient maybe?) and Connor seemingly passing through the maelstrom of teenage traumas and angst by the time he reached 16 (lucky Nina!) Perhaps I only felt this way because I actually did not want it to end, I want to know what the future has in store for this lovely family.
Ellen-oceanside More than 1 year ago
THE ART OF HIDING. by Amanda Prowse. A smell, as though her husband was near, though he was to be at his son ball game. Then came the call husband was in hospital. He had been on the other side of town, not coming toward the game. Everything was left to her, what's with the deliquent bills, to a tune of 8 million pounds. Trust, after twenty years, to be left with nothing, why did he put it all together. What about her and their family. Great plot, of her deciding what to do next, and coming to terms of what Finn did. Given ARC by Net Galley for my voluntary review and my honest opinion.
Dalitza More than 1 year ago
Imagine having very little while growing up but finding your way into a nice life with nice things. A nice house in which you cook meals for your husband and your toughest choice of the day is your choice of tea, a nice private school to take your beautiful kids to in an equally nice car. Imagine suburbia heaven was your dream and you got it, until it turned into a nightmare. When a tragic accident kills Nina’s husband Nina is not only left to support her two sons and pick up the pieces of her broker heart, but also to patch back together a semblance of a life after she learns her husband left his family in financial ruin and forcing her to go back to a life and people she had long ago left behind. I'll be really honest. This is not what I was expecting nor is it in my regular kind of romance. I'm not even sure how it came up as a recommendation. That said, I liked the cover and summary, I also like the feeling of jumping into a book with some unknown aspect and then being pleasantly surprised. The Art of Hiding certainly achieved that as it is a beautiful tale of loss and self-discovery. It is heartbreaking, yet uplifting and thought provoking. Nina has to live through the stages of grief, face adversity and make tough choices. It’s an emotional rollercoaster, a journey that requires strength and courage not just on Nina’s part but her sons as well. The story is well written and powerful in the fact that it rings very real and true and I found it to be very engaging because of it. I seldom include personal tidbits in my reviews, but this one merits it. I’m a minimalist to the core. “Things” don’t appeal to me. I would much rather spend my valuable time celebrating a friend’s birthday by inviting them to dinner than giving them something they’ll likely never use. But this is not the norm and I’ve found the most people focus on “things”. This book addresses the importance of friends and family above material belongings.
brf1948 More than 1 year ago
I received a free electronic copy of this novel from Netgalley, Amanda Prowse, and Lake Union Publishing in exchange for a honest review. Thank you all for sharing your hard work with me. This is an excellent novel outlining the hardships faced by many family members at the loss of the major breadwinner. Our US seniors living on Social Security find their income halved at the death of a spouse. Nina and her boys find themselves without a dime just days after the death of their bread winner, with no advance notice that this sort of hardship was in the offing. And they handle it, with poise and gratitude for what they can bring away from this experience. This is a book I thoroughly enjoyed, and one I can heartily recommend.
Momma_Becky More than 1 year ago
The Art of Hiding started out interesting enough. The author has a good writing style and the story flows well in the beginning. Nina's loss is truly heartbreaking and then she's blindsided by circumstances that were kept hidden from her. When I read the blurb, I did have a slightly different idea of what this story would be about and that assumption was my own fault. That, in itself, wouldn't have bothered me. What did bother me was the way the story started to lag about a quarter of the way through. We're told, repeatedly, that Nina grew up poor, so I didn't quite get her naiveté when it came to money matters. We don't really get much about Finn, other than a few memories and the fact that he kept problems hidden from Nina. From what is told, I got the impression of someone who was a little controlling and wanted to keep the "little wife" at home. Once the pace of the story slowed down, it started to lose me and most of the book was pretty depressing. While I can understand and sympathize with Nina's circumstances, she drones on and on about the same things and starts to come across as whiny. That, combined with the slow pace, left me feeling a little ambivalent about how this one played out.
KindleKat64 More than 1 year ago
This is my first Amanda Prowse book and it won't be my last. I could not put this book down. What a well written story about life, family, loss and struggle. The realism in this book was just wonderful. I cried, laughed and rooted so hard for Nina, Connor and Declan!! I admire Nina for her strength in pulling it together and figuring out how to deal with the reality of the awful situation she finds herself in after her husband Finn's death. She was always taken care of by Finn and he handled all of the finances so she never had to worry about money, until now. She was a stay at home mum who took care of her home, her husband and their two boys now 15 and 10. These poor boys go through such a gamut of emotions it is just gut-wrenching at times. So with no workplace skills because she hadn't worked outside the home and did not go to college, Nina suddenly finds herself having to figure out how to support her family, which she does with poise and grace. Her sister Tiggy is a breath of fresh air in this story and gives Nina a much needed reality check once Nina moves back to her old neighborhood where Tiggy has been living. This is a wonderful story and I would definitely recommend it.
LindaRomer More than 1 year ago
The Art of Hiding by Amanda Prowse I enjoyed reading this book. A moving story about a woman and her sons. The characters are strong and have a good story to tell, but I found the pacing a bit slow and no real bang. All in all a good story and an encouraging read. I give the Art of Hiding 3 stars for its solid story. I would recommend this book.
Kaits_Bookshelf More than 1 year ago
The Art of Hiding is a new novel by Amanda Prowse, releasing on August 22nd. I was invited to read an advance copy by Lake Union Publishing, so I owe them a big thank you for sending this book my way! I was excited when I received this book because I had not read any novels by Prowse before, and I love discovering new authors!  To be perfectly honest, I was a little disappointed after reading the synopsis. The book sounded, well, depressing. The main character, Nina, finds her world unraveling at the death of her husband (not a spoiler – the whole book is based on this event and the ripple effect it causes).  It turned out that, yes, the circumstances of this book were in fact depressing, but I found the story to be interesting and ultimately uplifting. While books set with sad and depressing circumstances don’t often appeal to me, strong characters do. Nina was very well-written. Her character went through many stages and developed beautifully into a strong, independent woman. Prowse writes Nina’s struggles elegantly, using detail and emotion to make the reader really empathize with her.  In addition to Nina being well-written, her sister, Tiggy, was a great supporting character, bringing laughter and a sense of security to the story. Nina’s boys, Connor and Declan, are also great characters. They are tasked with staying brave for their mother while also mourning their father and having their entire lives turned upside down. Unlike Nina, the boys have only ever known luxury, private schools, fine clothes, and a mansion. So their new circumstances are less of an uncomfortable adjustment and more of a complete and utter shock.  I liked this story. I wasn’t sure I would, but good writing has a way of doing that!  Read full review at: KaitsBookshelf.com