I have a lot to thank Brandon Flowers for. He fronts my favorite band, writes anthems that cut right to the heart, and puts on just about the greatest show imaginable. I adore Brandon Flowers, and now I adore him even more because his gorgeous song “Between Me and You” inspired Allison Winn Scotch to write a beautiful new novel by the same name.
I love it when art inspires art. I also love any excuse to mention Brandon Flowers, but this is Book Perfume, and all of my focus today is on Allison Winn Scotch and her amazing book.
Between Me and You tells the story of Ben and Tatum, a screenwriter and an actress, who meet in grad school, fall in love, and somehow, over the years, fall apart. As young twenty-somethings, Ben’s film career is full of promise and buzz, while Tatum is bartending in a New York dive and struggling to hold onto her dreams and pay the rent. As their relationship builds from love to marriage to parenthood, Tatum’s career builds right along with it, and Ben—well, Ben begins to look like someone who once was someone. Told in alternating, completely compelling points of view–his moving from the present backwards, hers past to present—Between Me and You is a complex and deeply emotional read that explores the rush of falling in love and the heartaches and secrets, big and small, that affect a relationship.
I love Allison Winn Scotch’s writing, and this may just be her best novel yet. From the earliest pages, I was hooked on Ben and Tatum’s story, and the beautifully flawed, richly drawn cast of characters made this book impossible to put down. As a reader, there’s nothing I find quite as engrossing as seeing characters I’ve come to love make mistakes, and diving into all of the hows and whys behind those mistakes is guaranteed to keep me reading until deep into the night. As a writer, I’m amazed by the care and craft that went into creating these complementary dual narratives and how they blend together to create a story that is deeper, richer, and more powerful because of its structure. Never once was I confused by the two timelines. In fact, this felt like the only way this story could be told. That’s an author who knows her characters and her story, and the result is a novel that will absolutely stay with me.
If you’re looking to get sucked into a compelling read about the mess, heartache, and power of love in relationships, look no further than Between Me and You. And while you’re at it, give the Brandon Flowers song a listen. Because you should always give Brandon Flowers a listen.