Genre: Adult Contemporary
Recommended Age: 16+
Favorite Quote: “I paid from the dress they had located, and watched as they wrapped it in tissue, before placing it inside little bag. I didn’t want to bring it home, in case anyone found it, so I carefully laid it on the wall of the car park where I had left my car. I hoped, I still hope, that someone found it and a little girl got to wear it. A little girl like you.”
I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley. This did not influence me in any way.
As Lucy approaches her 40th birthday, she seems to have the perfect life. A great marriage, a cozy home, a successful career, and now a chance to begin trying for her own baby. Life couldn’t be anymore perfect. But when conceiving is harder than Lucy thought and when her stepdaughter comes to stay with them, Lucy is constantly reminded of what she feels she’ll never have: a child of her own. When her own failing dreams and her step daughters attitude combine, the results make Lucy feel as if she’s losing everything she’s ever worked towards.
I don’t typically read adult novels, especially adult contemporary novels, but something about this book drew me to it so I decided to give it a try. Generally, this book was an enjoyable novel. The quality of writing was excellent, albeit it was wrote by an author I assume to be British so some of the terms the characters used were a bit unfamiliar to me, but I dug deep to my Doctor Who vocab and came out knowing most of the phrases used lol. The plot development is well thought out and it keeps you guessing til the end. The book is also very insightful. It’s primary objective is to shed light on miscarriages, which is something not a lot of people talk about. It’s a hard subject to approach, which is why a lot of people refuse to discuss it, but the women and men who have had to go through miscarriage shouldn’t have to suffer in silence. More acceptance on the matter is needed and I think this book does a good job at showing how miscarriage can effect everyone. The book also offered insight on what it means to be a mother. A few years ago I stumbled upon this YouTube video featuring women who were walking different paths in their life. Some were mothers who had children of all ages. Some of the mothers were old, some were young. Some of the women were grandmothers and some were stepmoms. Some were pregnant or were trying to conceive. Some had miscarried and some had experienced a still birth. The message was clear: no matter your walk you are a mother. If you’ve wanted, tried, or had a child you’ve been a mother. You’ve also been a mother if you’ve been a stepmom, a surrogate, or a grandmother. Motherhood isn’t defined as the ability to have children, it’s defined by the ability to love the children in your life, love the child who hasn’t come yet, or love the ones who couldn’t stay long. This book is a perfect companion to that YouTube video in that it teaches you about the different types of mothers you can be.
While this book is so beautiful, I did find issue with the pacing, some of the characters, and the ease of reading. I felt the pacing was a bit awkward at times. There were random shifts in time throughout the book and sometimes it wasn’t stated how long of a jump the reader made, which left me confused as to the time line. Lucy and Jonah’s character development also confounded me at certain points. I was amazed at how a nearly 50 year old man could behave like a child and how a nearly 50 year old woman could have thought that secrets were something she could keep in a marriage. I felt both of these characters were childish at times and I sometimes wondered how reliable the narrator (Lucy) was thoughout the novel. I felt some of the things that happened were biased in Lucy’s favor, but this bias was resolved at the end of the novel. This is why I gave the rating a 4.5 rather than a 4, the characters did develop and some of my issues were resolved by the end of the novel. The ease of reading was also an issue I found with the book. It’s not that the writing is bad, quite the opposite, but I felt the material was that in which it might be very hard for some people to read, especially those who’ve suffered the lose of a child at any stage. So, just to forewarn you, you might cry.
Overall I liked the book! This is a new release and I believe you should check it out if it sounds interesting to you! Definitely a must read for anyone who’s had kids or is thinking about having them.