A pregnancy pact between three teenage girls puts their mothers' love to the ultimate test in this explosive new novel from Barbara Delinsky
When Susan Tate's seventeen-year-old daughter, Lily, announces she is pregnant, Susan is stunned. A single mother, she has struggled to do everything right. She sees the pregnancy as an unimaginable tragedy for both Lily and herself.
Then comes word of two more pregnancies among high school juniors who happen to be Lily's best friends-and the town turns to talk of a pact. As fingers start pointing, the most ardent criticism is directed at Susan. As principal of the high school, she has always been held up as a role model of hard work and core values. Now her detractors accuse her of being a lax mother, perhaps not worthy of the job of shepherding impressionable students. As Susan struggles with the implications of her daughter's pregnancy, her job, financial independence, and long-fought-for dreams are all at risk.
The emotional ties between mothers and daughters are stretched to breaking in this emotionally wrenching story of love and forgiveness. Once again, Barbara Delinsky has given us a powerful novel, one that asks a central question: What does it take to be a good mother?
©2010 Harper Collins Publishers (P)2010 Harper Collins Publishers
Praise for ‘The Family Tree’:‘Delinsky’s writing is fluid and makes for a hard-to-put down book as she deftly blends tense family drama with heavy political issues’Glamour‘…a sensitive exploration of the prejudices that many hold but few express…a page turner that asks serious questions about America’s relationship with its past’The Times‘Fans of Jodi Picoult will love this…a poignant family story’Daily Express‘A really interesting and sometimes harrowing tale that makes compelling reading.’SunPraise for ‘The Family Tree’:‘Delinsky writes with insight about complex family matters, and here adds thought-provoking concerns about race in America in a novel that will stir debate and inspire self-examination.’Booklist‘Delinsky smoothly challenges characters and readers alike to confront their hidden hypocrises (while getting) the political and personal dynamics just right.’Publishers Weekly‘Delinsky admirably allows her characters to acknowledge and correct their biases. Fail-safe delivery of an issues-packed story.’Kirkus Reviews‘“The Family Tree” is warm, rich, textured, and impossible to put down.’Nora Roberts, author of ‘Valley of SilencePraise for Barbara Delinsky:‘Delinsky delves deeper into the human heart and spirit with each new novel’The Inquirer‘Delinsky excels at…insightful portrayal[s] of captivating people facing challenges both ordinary and dramatic’Booklist
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This book explores the emotions that are felt when teenage girls become pregnant, from the perspective of both the girls and their parents. It also shows how teenage pregnancy can damage the reputation of the parents, especially if one of them is in a position of authority. When I read this book, I felt no sympathy towards the girls. Sure, they may think that they can be good mothers, however when it comes down to it, they didn?t think about the implications that would come with becoming pregnant. This book is a prime example of how teenage pregnancy can affect the girls involved, and the effect on their families. Today, you will often find a story somewhere about teenaged girls becoming pregnant, either accidentally or by design. This book shows how immoral some teenagers can be and really explores what can happen when the truth unfolds. The reader of this book is very good. I generally prefer it if readers use different voices for the characters, however not doing this works well in this case. One thing to be aware of is that this book contains a slight amount of bad language. However, this is only very occasionally. Over all, a very good listen.
"A lot of important questions about responsibility"
It has been far too long since I read a Barbara Delinsky novel, and that became ever more clear to me as I listened to this audiobook any chance I got - washing dishes, ironing, walking to and from town, cooking dinner, etc. This was one of those books that really got my emotions riled up, but in a good way. There's a definite difference between stirred up emotions over anger at a character, or anger at the way a character is being treated. In this book's case, it was the second one, and I became increasingly annoyed at the way everyone blamed Susan for her daughter's pregnancy. This book brought u p a lot of important questions about parenting and responsibility, and in particular: at what stage do you stop being accountable for your children's actions? Sometimes, no matter how much you have talked to your child about a certain issue, they'll still ignore your advice and do their own thing.
This was a very compelling novel, probably one of Barbara's best so far. It ranks right up there along with While My Sister Sleeps, Shades of Grace and The Family Tree. I'm so glad I picked this audiobook as it reminded me of how much I enjoy Barbara's family sagas, especially the way that she looks at situations from the view points of all the parties involved and examines how they each cope with the crisis at hand. I almost wish she'd revisit Lily and her friends sometime, once their children are grown up, and see how their friendships have changed over time. I will definitely be making an effort to seek out more books from Barbara and I'm so glad that Not My Daughter rekindled my love for her writing.
"Watered down Jodi Picoult."
I used to really enjoy Barbara Delinsky's books, but this one reads as if it was deliberately written to appeal to the fans of Jodi Picoult - think of a controversial subject and write a book about it. I found this much too repetative and predictable with a nauseatingly perfect ending.
"It could happen..."
School girls make a pact to have babies at the same time. Scary because it could happen!! Well written, annoying reader but you get used to her. Overall a good story.
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