Published by St. Martin's Press on February 21st 2017
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Received a ARC of this book from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
At the beginning of the book Alice learns that she has Cancer. Instead of worrying about herself, she worries about her 15 year old daughter, Zoe. Alice and Zoe are a team. Zoe has never met her father and only has her Mother, Alice as support. Zoe also suffers from Social Anxiety Disorder with Panic Attacks. Due to Zoe’s anxiety, Alice has built her life around Zoe. They depend on each other and now that Alice is facing a major illness, she fears for her daughter and her future.
Alice soon has to rely on the kindness of strangers. She has a brother Paul but he is an alcoholic. He would like to help, and does as much as he can but it is obvious, he should not be the one taking care of a 15 year old girl if something should happen to Alice. So Alice leans on her kind oncology nurse, Kate who is dealing with personal issues of her own and her social worker, Sonja who also is dealing with serious issues in her own life. As Alice seeks treatment, her daughter is plagued with Anxiety and school issues.
This book is made up of up chapters dealing with each characters life. It is a glimpse into the lives of all of the women who must come together to help out Alice and her daughter Zoe but it is also about the women, their stories, their hardships and their relationships with others.
This book deals with a lot of issues: Cancer, Social Anxiety Disorder, domestic violence, infertility, getting help, learning to let others in, depending on others, and rape to name a few. What works is how real the situations in this book felt. Zoe pulled at my heart strings the most. The Author approached her Social Anxiety in a very realistic way – describing her symptoms and inner struggles. As a painfully shy teenager who had anxiety issues, I could really relate to this character. I liked how she faced her fears and opened up to Harry and Kate.
There is a twist in this book which I did not see coming but upon thinking about it, I was like “of course” and “yes, that makes sense”. There is some predictability her but that does not take away from this book. One thing I would have liked to have seen in this book is an epilogue.