I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Idea of You by Amanda Prowse
Published by Lake Union Publishing on March 21, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Fiction
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With her fortieth birthday approaching, Lucy Carpenter thinks she finally has it all: a wonderful new husband, Jonah, a successful career and the chance of a precious baby of her own. Life couldn’t be more perfect.
But becoming parents proves much harder to achieve than Lucy and Jonah imagined, and when Jonah’s teenage daughter Camille comes to stay with them, she becomes a constant reminder of what Lucy doesn’t have. Jonah’s love and support are unquestioning, but Lucy’s struggles with work and her own failing dreams begin to take their toll. With Camille’s presence straining the bonds of Lucy’s marriage even further, Lucy suddenly feels herself close to losing everything…
This heart-wrenchingly poignant family drama from bestselling author Amanda Prowse asks the question: in today’s hectic world, what does it mean to be a mother?
Lucy is a 39-year old advertising executive who has just about given up on marriage and motherhood after her fiance left her to marry her cousin. But when she attends the christening of her godson, she meets Jonah Carpenter who immediately is smitten and so is she. They soon marry and try vigilantly to have a baby with tragic results. Life gets even more complicated when Jonah’s 16-year old daughter, Camille, comes for an extended visit.
I couldn’t decide for quite some time whether I liked Lucy or not but as the story progressed, it occurred to me that it wasn’t about liking or disliking this character. She’s experiencing the normal feelings you would expect of someone of her age and circumstances. Lucy is just human and I ended up admiring her for being authentic in her reactions to miscarriage, a resentful stepdaughter and a husband in denial.
What’s distinctive about this story as the characters show up as very real. I found myself wanting them, particularly Lucy, to behave differently but would then realize that she was reacting in ways I probably would have behaved. There was an unforeseen revelation late in the story that answers many questions while at the same time throwing gasoline on the Carpenter home. It’s provocative, emotionally and intellectually. Though the author could sometimes be overly descriptive of non-essential details, I thought it was well written and paced. I’m glad I read it as I learned so much about the emotional long term toll of miscarriage on everyone involved.