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Somewhere Out There

av Amy Hatvany

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygDiskussioner
8212261,808 (4.02)Ingen/inga
What happens when two sisters who were torn apart when their young mother abandoned them--and grew up in tragically different circumstances--reunite thirty-five years later to find her? For readers who love Jodi Picoult, acclaimed author Amy Hatvany fearlessly explores complex family issues in her gripping, provocative new novel. Natalie Clark knew never to ask her sensitive adoptive mother questions about her past. She doesn't even know her birth mother's name--only that the young woman signed parental rights over to the state when Natalie was a baby. Now Natalie's own daughter must complete a family tree project for school, and Natalie is determined to unearth the truth about her roots. Brooke Walker doesn't have a family. At least, that's what she tells herself after being separated from her mother and her little sister at age four. Having grown up in a state facility and countless foster homes, Brooke survives the only way she knows how, by relying on herself. So when she discovers she's pregnant, Brooke faces a heart-wrenching decision: give up her baby or raise the child completely on her own. Scared and confused, she feels lost until a surprise encounter gives her hope for the future. How do our early experiences--the subtle and the traumatic--define us as adults? How do we build relationships when we've been deprived of real connection? Critically acclaimed author Amy Hatvany considers controversial and complicated questions about childhood through the lens of her finely crafted characters in this astute novel about mending wounds by diving into the truth of what first tore us apart.… (mer)
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This book is an excessively romantic view of a mother's poverty-driven relinquishment of her children and what happens to all of them in later life. The underlying plot is, however, appealing to me and I can't deny the author's skill in coaxing emotional response from the reader, me included. Nonetheless, there are too many instances of lack of realism to justify a better rating. For example: prisoners who care about each other and express that care; a caring prison system; adopted children easily finding each other and their mother; a man who insists on providing support for the (unborn) child of his ex-girlfriend who says she wants nothing to do with him; a mother who runs a sweet food business successfully in her 'spare' time and who has a remarkably supportive husband; etc. On one level you could look at this as propaganda for the American dream - despite huge adversity you can achieve success and middle-class status if you just choose that option. But if you're in the mood to be given some hope when the situation seems utterly hopeless (as I guess I must have been) then this is the right book for you. ( )
  oldblack | Nov 16, 2019 |
Jennifer Walker is barely twenty, homeless, and trying to care for a four-year-old and a six-month old on her own when desperation and lack of money cause her to leave her two girls in her car while she tries to steal food from a convenience store.

She gets caught.

Facing a year in jail and no more prospects when she gets out than she has now, she very reluctantly signs away her parental rights. She assumes they'll be placed together, but of course babies are far more adoptable than four-year-olds. Baby Natalie is quickly adopted, while four-year-old Brooke bounces from foster home to foster home.

We get the stories of Jennifer as she faces new traumas and tries to rebuild her life, married Natalie, and single Brooke in alternating chapters. Each of the women has healing to do. Jennifer and Brooke in their different ways are dealing with the emotional fallout of what they each perceive as their rejection by their respective mothers, and in Jennifer's case, the guilt of having to give up her own daughters. Natalie knew she was adopted, but has only just learned that she has a sister.

It's an emotional roller coaster for all of them. Natalie wonders why her parents kept secrets like the existence of her sister from her. Brooke is about to face the challenge of whether she can be a good mother when she never had or knew one.

And Jennifer needs to deal with her guilt over giving up her children, as well as some of the other things she did along the way.

This is very much a character-based novel, and very effectively explores the emotions of all three women.

Recommended.

I received a free electronic galley of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. ( )
  LisCarey | Sep 19, 2018 |
I am pretty critical when it comes to stories around foster care, so I was hesitant to pick this up. I actually ended up really enjoying it.

This is a story around two children and their mother. It follows their journey from foster care into adulthood. It was pretty emotional at times, especially the ending. I was glad it did not end up in the perfect ending as it is not how real life usually is when it comes to this topic. However; this is all about the relationship between Jennifer and her children. It is also about the relationship between the sisters. It is not fast paced, so if you do not like things like that then this will not be for you. If you are looking for an emotionally impactful story, then pick this up.

Overall, I really enjoyed this one. ( )
  SimplyKelina | Sep 3, 2018 |
I received a copy through Netgalley to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.
I seem to be reading a lot of books lately that work my emotions. This is the story of a mother who gives up her children, ages four and six-months in hopes of them having a better life. She believes they will be kept together, but they aren't.

This story is told from three points of view. First we have Jennifer, the mother who gave up her children when she got in trouble with the law. Then we have Brooke who was the oldest of the girls. She grew up in the foster system and has always felt like she belonged nowhere. Now she is pregnant and trying to decide what is best for her own child. Finally we have Natalie who has never questioned her adoptive parents about her birth mother. When her daughter comes home from school with an assignment to create a family tree, Natalie sets out to find her birth mother and a sister she never knew. The author has done a phenomenal job developing the characters. You can't read this book and not feel for all of them involved. This is a story of finding love, forgiveness in a heartrending story.
  skstiles612 | Jul 30, 2016 |
If I had to describe this book in one word, it would be 'bland.'

With that being said, it's not a bad book. I actually really did enjoy it and would even recommend it to others if they expressed interest. It's a fresh take on the "closed adoption" story, and it's not like anything I've really ever read.

But my one complaint is that it easily could have been condensed to a short story. The alternating perspectives added further insight and a glimpse into the characters that, although linked, possessed very differing personalities. It was multi-dimensional, it was interesting...it was just a bit blah.

Overall, would I recommend this book to others? You know what? Probably. It really was pretty good. I just can't get over the fact that I was a couple of times tempted to just skim to the interesting parts. I know I'm holding writers to a high standard of constant entertainment. Sorry about that.

What did I think?: I thought this was a good book but it was a bit drawn out for my taste. The characters were well done, and I have very little to complain about.

Who should read it?: Is there an audience for adoption stories out there? If so, those people. Otherwise, I say that if you read the description and are tempted, give it a shot.




WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM ( )
  tipsy_writer | May 19, 2016 |
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What happens when two sisters who were torn apart when their young mother abandoned them--and grew up in tragically different circumstances--reunite thirty-five years later to find her? For readers who love Jodi Picoult, acclaimed author Amy Hatvany fearlessly explores complex family issues in her gripping, provocative new novel. Natalie Clark knew never to ask her sensitive adoptive mother questions about her past. She doesn't even know her birth mother's name--only that the young woman signed parental rights over to the state when Natalie was a baby. Now Natalie's own daughter must complete a family tree project for school, and Natalie is determined to unearth the truth about her roots. Brooke Walker doesn't have a family. At least, that's what she tells herself after being separated from her mother and her little sister at age four. Having grown up in a state facility and countless foster homes, Brooke survives the only way she knows how, by relying on herself. So when she discovers she's pregnant, Brooke faces a heart-wrenching decision: give up her baby or raise the child completely on her own. Scared and confused, she feels lost until a surprise encounter gives her hope for the future. How do our early experiences--the subtle and the traumatic--define us as adults? How do we build relationships when we've been deprived of real connection? Critically acclaimed author Amy Hatvany considers controversial and complicated questions about childhood through the lens of her finely crafted characters in this astute novel about mending wounds by diving into the truth of what first tore us apart.

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