Title: With All My Love: A Novel
Author: Patricia Scanlan
Review: Some books are such that it is difficult to say something different from what everyone else is saying about it. This is the story of 3 generations of women who are learning to forgive. You love them, you hate them, but we all can find a bit of ourselves in each one of them. Who hasn’t struggled with forgiving others, especially betrayal? This book will make you cry so be prepared with tissues close by…expect it at the end for sure.
Relationships are difficult and in a family that you are born into that is all you really know. So how do we learn to grow up and apart without destroying the family we came from and the good that we gleaned from them? This book is about women and women have issues…many and varied as do men, but we are also mothers and daughters and that relationship is so tied to everything we say and do that it paints all other aspects of our lives. The relationship between mothers and daughters is such that I sometimes wish I had more than 1 daughter, but I do have 4 sisters so that is lots of work and entertainment. Love is central to this book and isn’t that the way it is with family…
This book is well written and thought provoking. Each story is its own (in a way just like each of us is), yet each intertwines with the others to show the way each of our actions ripples into those lives around us. Family is the relationship that makes us who we are good, bad or ugly it is our foundation.
In life, as we grow, we build other relationships that can challenge what we know and make us question who we really are. But in the end we are all connected and seeing that connection can help forgiveness to flourish and bless our lives. What we do matters, what we say can build or destroy, who we are is important and our contributions are noticed.
Publisher: Published July 30th 2013 by Atria Books (first published January 1st 2013)
Quick Review: 4 stars out of 5
Where did I get the book: Sent by the publisher for an honest review.
Synopsis: A heartwarming novel about a shocking discovery that forever changes the lives of three generations of women.
When Briony McAllister takes a trip to visit her mother, Valerie, she uncovers a letter from her long-lost grandmother, bringing to light a nearly unforgivable act her mother has kept secret for decades. Having always believed that her grandparents didn’t want to see her, she finds that the opposite is true: her grandmother had been seeking her out all along, and it was her own mother who willfully kept them apart.
Devastated that her past has come back to haunt her, Valerie realizes that her daughter’s anger might cause their troubled family history to repeat itself in a new generation. Rich with emotion and featuring magnificent descriptions of Ireland, With All My Love deftly weaves the stories of the past and present to take us into the heart of a family at war. As the truth is revealed, so too are the complex yet enduring bonds between mothers and daughters.
Author Biography: Patricia Scanlan was born in Dublin, where she still lives. While working as a librarian she started to write, and now has a full-time career as a bestselling author.
Book'd Out "A compelling, poignant examination of relationships, motherhood, secrets, betrayal and the unbreakable bond of family, All My Love is brought to an eminently satisfying conclusion as the women seek forgiveness. This is a wonderful novel sure to hit the bestseller list."
Ciska's Book Chest "I felt like hitting the main characters of this book. Both Valerie and Tessa deserved it in my eye even though it would not have helped. If you cannot find a place to talk after a person you love dies it is sad. There were so many situations in the story that could have been avoided if people would have been honest with one another that it started to become a struggle to read them. As said I was ready to hit one of them. Jeff was not much of a help either in the relationship. Even without marrying her he could have done so much more to make it clear to Valerie that he loved her. Lorcan and Briony are really the people that make the story bearable. I think Lorcan was a real hero only saying something when needed though but he did not give Tessa a free reign in her behavior and he is a saint that he did not get angrier with her after losing Briony due to her actions. I got really tired with Tessa repeating her problems with her emotions due to her age and the thing she missed out on. In the end the book was a bit to long for me but I did enjoy the read. As said Lorcan and Briony make up for a lot and I do like stories where family secrets unravel.