Debbie's World of Books
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Review: Leave Me by Gayle Forman

September 5th, 2016 by Debbie's World of Books

Leave Me by Gayle Forman

Source: Received for review

Publication date: September 6, 2016

Publisher: Algonquin Books

Rating: ★★★★☆

About the book:

International bestselling author Gayle Forman’s trademark humor and insight abound in this masterful adult debut, showing us that sometimes you have to leave home in order to find it again.

For every woman who has ever fantasized about driving past her exit on the highway instead of going home to make dinner, for every woman who has ever dreamed of boarding a train to a place where no one needs constant attention–meet Maribeth Klein. A harried working mother who’s so busy taking care of her husband and twins, she doesn’t even realize she’s had a heart attack.

Afterward, surprised to discover that her recuperation seems to be an imposition on those who rely on her, Maribeth does the unthinkable: She packs a bag and leaves. But, as is so often the case, once we get to where we’re going, we see our lives from a different perspective. Far from the demands of family and career and with the help of liberating new friendships, Maribeth is finally able to own up to secrets she has been keeping from those she loves and from herself.

With big-hearted characters who stumble and trip, grow and forgive, Leave Me is about facing our fears. Gayle Forman, a dazzling observer of human nature, has written an irresistible novel that confronts the ambivalence of modern motherhood head-on.

My Review:

I am a huge fan of Gayle Forman’s YA books so when I saw she had a new book coming out I jumped on it. Then I realized that this was an adult book but figured as heart wrenching as her YA books are, why not give this a try. I think it’s going to be one of those books that has readers loving it and tearing it apart because really how can you like a mother who could walk away from her twin 5 year olds. I’ll admit I went in all prepared not to like Maribeth because as a mother of two just the thought of doing something like that is horrifying. But I have to admit I actually ended up really getting into this book.

As a single mother of two with a very demanding job I felt like I could truly empathize with Maribeth. I’ve been in the situation where I’m literally at my wit’s end and instead of getting the help I desperately need it seems like the world just keeps dumping more challenges on you. So while I would never be able to do what she did I can’t say I don’t day dream about it now and then on a particularly trying day. In today’s day and age there is so much pressure to be the perfect mother, involved in every aspect of your child’s life, volunteering at their school, enrolling them in all sorts of activities, all the while managing a career because that’s what is expected nowadays. So I can imagine how having a heart attack while already feeling beaten down, then not to get any help, can make a woman snap. I truly wanted to strangle Maribeth’s husband.

Watching as Maribeth goes through the journey of figuring out what she wants in life, dealing with the choices she’s made in the past and coming to the realization of what she needs to do to change her life was engrossing. I couldn’t stop turning the pages wondering what she would do next. I didn’t agree with many of her actions and yes she was childish at some points but I can’t honestly say I wouldn’t have wanted to do the same in her situation. The one part of the story that didn’t really grab me was her journey to find her birth mother. It didn’t pull me in and I honestly think the book could have gotten along just fine without it other than it served as the catalyst to opening the door to reconciliation between Maribeth and her husband.

Whether you agree or disagree with Maribeth’s actions there is no doubt this book will run your emotions through the ringer. It made me cry and have a mini break down of my own as I re-evaluated the choices I made in my own life.

Find it online:

Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Posted in 4 Star Books, Books, General Fiction

One Response

  1. Kailana

    Glad this is good. Having enjoyed her YA, this is one I hope to get to sooner rather than later!

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