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Publisher's Summary

A young mother surrenders her daughters. A loving family quickly adopts one while the other spends her turbulent youth in foster care. What happens when the sisters reunite 35 years later to find the woman who abandoned them? Amy Hatvany fearlessly explores complex family issues in her gripping, provocative new novel.

Natalie Clark knew never to ask her sensitive adoptive mother questions about her past. She doesn't even know her birth mother's name - only that the young woman signed parental rights over to the state when Natalie was a baby. Now Natalie's own daughter must complete a family tree project for school, and Natalie is determined to unearth the truth about her roots.

Brooke Walker doesn't have a family. At least that's what she tells herself after being separated from her mother and her little sister at age four. Having grown up in a state facility and countless foster homes, Brooke survives the only way she knows how - by relying on herself. So when she discovers she's pregnant, Brooke faces a heart-wrenching decision: give up her baby or raise the child completely on her own. Scared and confused, she feels lost until a surprise encounter gives her hope for the future.

How do our early experiences - the subtle and the traumatic - define us as adults? How do we build relationships when we've been deprived of real connection? Critically acclaimed author Amy Hatvany considers controversial and complicated questions about childhood through the lens of her finely crafted characters in this astute novel about mending wounds by diving into the truth of what first tore us apart.

©2016 Amy Hatvany (P)2016 Simon & Schuster

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    105
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    82
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    30
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    6

Performance

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Story

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Sandie
  • Elk Grove, CA, United States
  • 03-28-16

Great Book😄😄

I've been having a hard time finding a good lately. Hopefully this has ended by bad luck. Great story. Very heart warming and fast paced. I never got bored with the story.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

wonderfully told story

loved the story. the ladies who read the book were a great pick. I listen to my books while I work...this one kept me going at the gym...had to hear what was coming next

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Hmmmm

Unbelievably sad and basically ... Unbelievable. Yes, it's a story but I was repeatedly irritated that while excruciating and accurate detail was provided about technology (internet searches, phone communications, etc) and what sounded like very 'real' details about sealed records, adoptions, etc. - WHY NO HOMELess SHelters? Or social services of any kind? Food stamps, welfare, WIC - they were in a big city and these kind of things are there. Esp. If she had multiple arrests - prior to the big event.
And that self-centered broken hearted mother who in the end decides "anh, never mind." Huh?
Not my favorite.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

good book, good story, good performance.

the story is engaging. in listened to this book in a single day because I wanted to know what was going to happen next. I wish the ending would have offered a final wrap up to one of the main plots but it didn't . I don't want to give the ending away or lack of ending I should say. this is the first book I have read from this author and I will likely try her again.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Couldn't stop listening

This was a very heart wrenching story - had tears in my eyes a few times. But at the same time I couldn't stop listening to find out how all of their lives played out.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Highly Overrated!

Can somebody please tell me why this audiobook gets such rave reviews? What am I missing? 😕 I mean, the storyline is far from creative and gut wrenching, the characters are one dimensional, and the narration is pretty awful, including Kasandra Campbell’s performance of Jennifer. Also, the author goes into way too many descriptive details, boring the listener to tears! I expected so much more! 11 hours of my life wasted!!!😒

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

The ending

The ending was a let down. Disappointing in not how I'd have liked it to turn out but also it left a feeling of non closure. Unsatisfying.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • TC
  • 07-12-18

Simperingly Awful!

I absolutely hated this book. It began with a premise that caught my attention and slowly drew me in, so I kept listening. I wish I hadn’t. By the last third of the book, the narration became so slow, simpering, and sappy, I was literally rolling my eyes and mocking the dialogue out loud. Fortunately, I was alone, so there are no witnesses.

The characters all seem more like cardboard figures than real people a reader might relate to. They’re basically one dimensional and never change or grow. Sure, the mother who gave away her babies eventually
bettered her circumstances, but she did stupid things at the beginning of the book, and stupid things at the end. She loved and cared for animals. Fantastic. Her one and only redeeming quality.

If you must read this ridiculous fiction, do yourself a favor and READ it. The audio version makes a bad book worse.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Better if shorter...

The wordy, repetitive and mundane details of each character’s daily life bogged the storyline down making the listen tedious at times and about 30% longer than necessary. Still an interesting plot, though, if you have the time! Also didn’t like the “Brooke” character narrator but Cassandra Campbell is one of my favorites!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great listen

The story has twists and turns that make it very interesting. The feelings of the characters are believable and identifiable. Makes you think about how our experiences shape our lives.