LEAVE ME by Gayle Forman

LEAVE ME

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KIRKUS REVIEW

What if an overworked mother simply walked away? Could she find herself yet keep her abandoned family?

Maribeth works full time, keeps house , and even manages to be a hands-on mother to her 4-year-old twins so her husband, Jason, can work longer hours —after all, it’s not easy to make it in the music business. So when she starts feeling a bit queasy, tired, and achy one day, she simply carries on. Luckily a previously scheduled appointment with her gynecologist soon sends her to the hospital. But a heart attack and emergency bypass surgery don’t buy her any recovery time. Within days of being sent home, her mother, who was supposed to help her recuperate, doesn’t, even refusing to go to the store in the rain; the twins require emergency lice patrol; and Jason calls her selfish. At her wits’ end, Maribeth walks away. Circumspect but careful about her health, she looks for a cardiologist who will accept her on a no-insurance, cash-only basis. She lands in the office of Stephen Grant, a man who clearly has secrets of his own: his name is spoken in hushed tones, he doesn’t appear to have any other patients, and, unlike the cursory doctors of her past, he takes the time to really understand Maribeth. Maribeth’s thoughts turn to finding her biological mother, leading her to Janice Pickering, founder of BurghBirthParents.org, who takes a personal interest in her. Award-winning teen author Forman’s (I Was Here, 2015, etc.) adult debut nails the frustrations of working motherhood, though the love complications conveniently disappear and the frayed ends of Maribeth’s life are retied too easily.

An appealing fairy tale for the exhausted and underappreciated.

Pub Date: Sept. 13th, 2016
ISBN: 978-1-61620-617-8
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Algonquin
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 2016




Kirkus Interview
Gayle Forman
author of I WAS HERE
January 27, 2015

In I Was Here, Gayle Forman’s latest novel after the release of the movie version of her novel If I Stay, Cody’s best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room and Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything—so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there’s a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can’t open—until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend’s death gets thrown into question. “An engrossing and provocative look at the devastating finality of suicide, survivor’s guilt, the complicated nature of responsibility and even the role of the Internet in life-and-death decisions,” our reviewer writes. We talk to Forman on January 27 on Kirkus TV. View video >

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