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What She Left Behind | [Ellen Marie Wiseman]

What She Left Behind

Ten years ago, Izzy Stone's mother fatally shot her father while he slept. Devastated by her mother's apparent insanity, Izzy, now 17, refuses to visit her in prison. But her new foster parents, employees at the local museum, have enlisted Izzy's help in cataloguing items at a long-shuttered state asylum. There, amid piles of abandoned belongings, Izzy discovers a stack of unopened letters, a decades-old journal, and a window into her own past.
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Publisher's Summary

Ten years ago, Izzy Stone's mother fatally shot her father while he slept. Devastated by her mother's apparent insanity, Izzy, now 17, refuses to visit her in prison. But her new foster parents, employees at the local museum, have enlisted Izzy's help in cataloguing items at a long-shuttered state asylum. There, amid piles of abandoned belongings, Izzy discovers a stack of unopened letters, a decades-old journal, and a window into her own past.

Clara Cartwright, 18 years old in 1929, is caught between her overbearing parents and her love for an Italian immigrant. Furious when she rejects an arranged marriage, Clara's father sends her to a genteel home for nervous invalids. But when his fortune is lost in the stock market crash, he can no longer afford her care and Clara is committed to the public asylum. Even as Izzy deals with the challenges of yet another new beginning, Clara's story keeps drawing her into the past. If Clara was never really mentally ill, could something else explain her own mother's violent act? Piecing together Clara's fate compels Izzy to re-examine her own choices - with shocking and unexpected results.

©2014 Ellen Marie Wiseman (P)2014 Tantor

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (122 )
5 star
 (45)
4 star
 (48)
3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Overall
4.1 (109 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.1 (108 )
5 star
 (44)
4 star
 (43)
3 star
 (12)
2 star
 (4)
1 star
 (5)
Performance
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  •  
    Marsha Tierra Verde, FL, United States 07-31-14
    Marsha Tierra Verde, FL, United States 07-31-14 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    27
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    "Good story, not great. Very different reader."

    The story moved along at a pace which is about my cup of tea. I thought more of the mysteries were going to tie together than they did, but...if I want that I guess I should write a book. It was easy to follow and distracting enough for the commute to work and back. The reader was very unusual. Ms Gilbert has perfect diction, I mean, when she read the line, "I liked to go there," you could clearly hear both the 'd' in 'liked' and the 't' in 'to' separately. She doesn't seemed strained at the level of perfection. But one character was read as continuously anxious. Every line of the character was worried and fearful and nervous. I supposed there was a slight difference between scared and terrified, but it got very old for me - like listening to a whiny child - because it was a main character. I suppose that if Sandra Bullock hyperventilating for 2 straight hours in the movie Gravity didn't bother you, then this won't either. It just diminished my enjoyment of the book a bit.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gwen Killen, AL, United States 08-24-14
    Gwen Killen, AL, United States 08-24-14 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    25
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    Story
    "LOVED this book! It's really two stories in one!"
    Where does What She Left Behind rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Definitely in my top ten...and my library contains over 2000 audio books!


    What was one of the most memorable moments of What She Left Behind?

    I am afraid to answer this because I don't want to give anything away. The ending was beautiful, but there were so many moving points in the story!


    Which character – as performed by Tavia Gilbert – was your favorite?

    Izzy was my favorite in the modern story and Clara was definitely my favorite overall.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    I'm not creative enough to do this justice--my failing, not the book's!


    Any additional comments?

    I HIGHLY recommend this! I almost never give a book 5 stars!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DC REEDVILLE, VA, United States 07-31-14
    DC REEDVILLE, VA, United States 07-31-14 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    41
    6
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    Story
    "STICK WITH IT, YOU WON'T BE DISAPPOINTED!"
    What made the experience of listening to What She Left Behind the most enjoyable?

    Women who preserve.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    After a little bit of a slow start, I could not stop listening!!!!


    Have you listened to any of Tavia Gilbert’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Really enjoyed the female characters but the male characters a little less; hence, the 4 starts. Overall very good.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Thank GOD it is 2014 and mental institutions are somewhat better managed and mental conditions are better treated.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maryellen 09-24-14
    Maryellen 09-24-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    21
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    Story
    "Bad Italian accent ruins narration"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    The story was decent. The narrator was horrible! The male lead sounded like Count dracular. I was interested in the characters.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Tavia Gilbert?

    Anyone would be better. She gave a terrible Italian accent to the male lead. Her voice was whiney and breathy.


    Any additional comments?

    Very disappointed with this author. It was my first book. Not sure if I would try another.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sharon 07-18-14
    Sharon 07-18-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
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    43
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    Story
    "Engrossing"
    What did you love best about What She Left Behind?

    All the twists. Just when I think I knew what direction the story was going I was proven wrong


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    No favorite


    Have you listened to any of Tavia Gilbert’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No. It was wonderful


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Oh yes. Very hard to put down


    Any additional comments?

    I did not think I would like this book as much as I did. I was not disappointed at all. In fact I was pleasantly surprised

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diemut McLean, VA, United States 11-09-14
    Diemut McLean, VA, United States 11-09-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    4
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    Story
    "Insults my intelligence"
    Would you try another book from Ellen Marie Wiseman and/or Tavia Gilbert?

    No


    Would you ever listen to anything by Ellen Marie Wiseman again?

    No


    How could the performance have been better?

    She reads too dramatically......much too eager.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Maybe a teenage girl would be thrilled by it.


    Any additional comments?

    Audible should warn listeners when a book is meant for teenagers who like horror. This book certainly is not for adults.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. LaCroix RI 10-23-14
    J. LaCroix RI 10-23-14 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Reading Must!"

    This book started out a bit slow and I had a hard time get past the narrator but I am so glad I did! It blew me away. I could not stop listening. I was so anxious to find out what happened to Claire. I don't want to give anything away but I am so very glad I got this book. I plan on reading the author's previous one now. This book made me do a bit of research and I was horrified to learn just how easy it was to put a woman in a mental institute back then and was horrified to read and hear of "treatments". This is a must listen too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. DeVries Northwest, IN. 09-08-14
    D. DeVries Northwest, IN. 09-08-14 Member Since 2009

    I have a quilting business. Since I love to read, I cannot read a book and quilt at the same time. Now I can listen to books and quilt too.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Wow!"

    I loved this book from beginning to end. The author Ellen Marie Wiseman did an excellent job intertwining two eras together. I would like to have known about Claire's parents more during her 'hospital stay'. But I was very very happy with this book and I will certainly listen to it again. The narrator Tavia Gilbert did an excellent job as well. I will recommend this book to all of my friends.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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