Written by: Randy Susan Meyers
Published by: Atria a division of Simon and Schuster February 12, 2013
Length: 336 pages
Source: Received a copy from publisher at NEIBA
The lives of three women are entwined when Tia has an affair with Nathan, married to Juliette. Nathan leaves Tia at the news of her pregnancy. Feeling lost and alone Tia gives her baby girl up for adoption in an open adoption to Caroline and her husband Peter. This is just the beginning to the story, as their lives remain twisted and enmeshed.
The book begins with news of Tia’s pregnancy and Nathan’s shock, he leaves her, and in an act of guilty confession he admits the affair to his wife. Naturally their marriage takes a huge hit from his indiscretion and while Juliette tries to forgive him, she does not forget. Tia decides that while she has already had an affair with a married man, she can’t abort her child, and she believes her child’s life will be better served with a mother and a father. Peter is anxious to start their family, his wife is a research doctor and he owns a software company, they have a very comfortable life. The daughter that Tia calls Honor, is adopted by Peter and Caroline, and becomes Savannah. Each year about the time of her birthday in March Caroline sends Tia a short letter and five pictures of Savannah. It’s now her fifth birthday, and Tia searches the photos trying to learn more about her daughter, she sees herself and also Nathan in the pictures. Tia is still in love with Nathan, or her idealized image of him. She recklessly decides to send a few pictures of their daughter, the daughter he knows nothing of, to Nathan. The letter and photos are intercepted by his wife. As she gazes at the photos and sees her own son in this little girl, she wants to know more, she needs to know more.
This book is written chapter by chapter as a view into the three women’s lives. The actions and reactions to each woman impact the other. I was immediately drawn into the story, wondering how their lives would intersect, and almost cringing as Tia decided to contact her former lover after five long years. I was fascinated by the varying views each of these women had on motherhood, it’s pros and cons, the gifts it gives and the constraints it puts on a woman. Tia was shamed and afraid to raise her daughter alone. Caroline was hesitant and nervous about parenting. She feared her feeling of ambivalence toward Savannah were obvious and would have a negative effect on her daughter. Juliette was fierce, protective, and she wanted to parent her own son’s and maybe even Savannah in her all encompassing style.
Meyers takes her readers into the lives of these women in other ways, looking into their extended families, traditions and comfort levels. The women are in different socioeconomic classes, and yet each is an educated woman capable of success, only Tia seems to be floundering in her career.
Randy Susan Meyers has written this beautiful book looking into the human frailties that we each have. I am in awe of the sensitivity and honesty she has captured in the story. 4.5 stars, and I now desperately want to read Randy’s first book!! She is a supportive writer and can be found all over the web, first on her website , and also on twitter and facebook. I had the privilege of meeting Randy last fall at another author event, she was warm, enthusiastic and kind. I’d love to sit down and talk to her for hours….she’s got a lot to say!!