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#First Lines Friday # The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley

This wonderful meme is originally hosted by Hoarding Books. The idea is to share the first few lines of a book you are reading or have recently read and then present it.

The first lines of the book are:

She had tried to return the book. As soon as she realized it had been left behind, she’d picked it up and rushed after its extraordinary owner. But he’d gone. He moved surprisingly swiftly for someone so old. Maybe he really didn’t want to be found.

It was a plain, pale-green exercise book, like the one Monica had carried around with her at school, filled with details of homework assignments. Her friends had covered their books with graffiti of hearts, flowers, and names of their latest crushes, but Monica was not a doodler. She had too much respect for good stationery.

On the firont cover were three words, beautifully etched in copperplate script: The Authenticity Project. In smaller writing, in the bottom corner, was the date: October 2018.Perhaps, thought Monica, there would be an address, or at least a name, on the inside so she could return it. Although it was physically unassuming, it had an air of significance about it.

She turned the front cover. There were only a few paragraphs on the first page.

How well do you know the people who live near you? How well do they know you? Do you even know the names of your neighbors? Would you realize if they were introuble, or hadn’t left their house for days?

Everyone lies about their lives. What would happen if you shared the truth instead? The one thing that defines you, that makes everything else about you fall into place? Not on the Internet, but with those real people around you?

Perhaps nothing. or maybe telling that story would change your life, or the life of someone you’ve not yet met.

That’s what I want to find out…

And the book is ...The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley.

Book Synopsis:

Everybody lies about their lives. What would happen if you shared the truth instead?

This is the question that Julian Jessop, an eccentric, seventy-nine-year-old artist writes in a pale green exercise book labelled The Authenticity Project, before leaving it in Monica’s Café on the Fulham Road.

Monica gave up her career as a high-flying lawyer to run her own café, but it isn’t going as well as she hoped. On finding Julian’s notebook, she in turn writes her own truth about her desire for a baby before passing the Project on. But having read his story, Monica’s immediate plan is to find a way to bring Julian out of his loneliness.

Hazard is the next to pick up the book – he is an addict who is desperate to finally part from his vices but cannot quite face his own truth yet. Instead, he becomes determined to find Monica her dream partner, so she can have the baby she longs for.

The Authenticity Project weaves its way between six characters, who all share unexpected truths about themselves in its pages and are slowly brought together.

Their lives become intertwined as they discover both the power, and the danger, of honesty.

Are you intrigued by the first lines of this book? Would you like to know more about what happens to Monica after she picks the mysterious green exercise book?

Or have you already read The Authenticity Project? If yes, did you like it? Would you recommend it?

Let me know in your comments!

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