Weekly Reads: In an Instant

“Don’t just try to be happy when you think of me — be happy. Look at the ocean and smile. Inhale the scent and celebrate. Remember me. Remember that I was never sad for more than a day, rarely for more than an hour. Remember the amazing times we had and what a goofball I was. Remember that I was scared of anything with more than four legs but fearless of adventure. Remember. Carry me inside you as a light that brightens your world and makes everything better. I don’t want to be a void, a hole, a shadow. REMEMBER ME!” 

― Suzanne Redfearn, “In an Instant”

In an instant, everything changed for Finn Miller, her family and her friend Mo. Nothing, no matter how hard they tried, would ever be the same.

In the blink of an eye, a devastating car crash hurdles eleven people over the side of a mountain. All they can think about now is survival. How are they expected to remain alive in the dead of winter in the pitch black of night? With some severely injured and others dead, how can they hold on to hope when the circumstance seems hopeless?

Author Suzanne Redfearn binds the live’s of these eleven characters in one single moment. Finn Miller has the vantage point of watching everyone’s individual journey. While not quite dead, she can see the world around her without the ability to interact with it. With Finn suspended between worlds and the rest lost as they try to reconcile the past, Redfearn uses the power of love to try to mend what cannot be undone. Redfearn uses this unique balance to severely alter the reader’s emotions as they become one with Finn. 

When survival is at risk, choices must be made. Choices that are sometimes brutal and unforgivable. Each character is haunted by the decisions they made or didn’t make. Although Fin needs to move on, she can’t leave until her family has been pieced back together.

“In an Instant” was inspired by Redfearn’s own personal experiences at age eight. Those concepts of survival were ever present in her own experience when she got caught in a freezing blizzard up on a mountain. She realised that when the survival instincts kick in, everyone only thinks of themselves. Even your best friend could turn on you. By writing the acclaimed novel “In an Instant,” she brought light to the dark side of survival and what it meant to live with choices made in a single moment.