The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley

Six strangers with one universal thing in common: their lives aren’t always what they make them out to be.

What would happen if they told the truth instead?

Julian Jessop is tired of hiding the deep loneliness he feels. So he begins The Authenticity Project – a small green notebook containing the truth about his life.

Leaving the notebook on a table in his friendly neighbourhood café, Julian never expects Monica, the owner, to track him down after finding it. Or that she’ll be inspired to write down her own story.

Little do they realize that such small acts of honesty hold the power to impact all those who discover the notebook and change their lives completely.

The Authenticity Project is a gorgeous book! I knew it was going to be good but I had no idea exactly how perfectly executed this unique idea would be. If you’re after a book that will reaffirm your faith in the best of human nature then this is the book for you.

When Monica finds a small green notebook called The Authenticity Project, she recognises the man who has written down the truth within its pages regarding the lonely life he is leading. She seeks him out and then is so inspired by his story that she adds to the book by writing her own honest account of her life within its pages. But little does she know how far their honesty is about to spread…

I loved this book so much! By bringing together a cast of very different characters, Clare Pooley lets them grow into their personalities slowly by sharing their experiences in a unique way. As they pass the baton on to the next person in need, they appear to be guided by a silken cord that also binds them all together. Julian was probably my favourite character with his anecdotes about his past that made me chuckle out loud but I equally loved Monica and Hazard and his meddling in what he believes is the right direction even though we can all see that it isn’t!! And there were plenty of surprises along the way to keep the narrative from getting too predictable!

The Authenticity Project is a feel good read with a thought provoking storyline about the lies we tell others but also ourselves. It’s a book about community and the kindness of strangers that reminds us of who we are versus who we think we should be and that we should celebrate our differences and uniqueness. A beautifully written book from start to finish.

Clare Pooley graduated from Newnham College, Cambridge and spent twenty years in the heady world of advertising, where the line between authenticity and fiction is constantly blurred, before becoming a full-time mum. She is the author of the hugely popular blog, Mummy was a Secret Drinker, under the pseudonym Sober Mummy and her memoir, The Sober Diaries was published in 2017 to critical acclaim. Her blog has had over two million hits and her TEDx talk, Making Sober Less Shameful, has had over 110,000 views.

Clare’s debut novel The Authenticity Project is inspired by her decision to expose the rather grubby truth about her seemingly perfect life in her memoir.

Clare writes from her kitchen table in Fulham, London where she lives with her long-suffering husband, three children, dog and an African pygmy hedgehog.

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I am a Norfolk girl living in leafy Cheshire with my grumpy Scotsman. A mum and nana who lives for my family but who is also addicted to reading (and Marmite!) I will read almost anything but my preferred genres to review are psychological thrillers, crime procedural novels or women's fiction. My kindle is my life but I also have a substantial bookshelf in my cosy reading room where I can go to escape the stresses of family life with plenty of tea and chocolate. I am a member of netgalley and bookbridg. I review on Amazon, where I'm a Top 500 reviewer, and Goodreads. You can always find me over on Twitter @jocatrobertson for any review requests.