Lucy Wakefield is a seemingly ordinary woman who does something extraordinary in a desperate moment: she takes a baby girl from a shopping cart and raises her as her own. It's a secret she manages to keep for over two decades -- from her daughter, the babysitter who helped raise her, family, coworkers, and friends. When Lucy's now-grown daughter Mia discovers the devastating truth of her origins, she is overwhelmed by confusion and anger and determines not to speak again to the mother who raised her. She reaches out to her birth mother for a tearful reunion, and Lucy is forced to flee to China to avoid prosecution. What follows is a ripple effect that alters the lives of many and challenges our understanding of the very meaning of motherhood.
what was mine
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"Simply told but deeply affecting, this urgent novel unravels the heartrending yet unsentimental tale of a woman who kidnaps a baby in a superstore--and gets away with it for twenty-one years"--
Blake Thorne feels bitterly betrayed by his wife Vivienne. A year ago, she ran away with their unborn son - Orion. When she returns to Manna City, he is ready to strike back at her for breaking his heart. He soon discovers, Vivienne and her father have other plans for him. Vivienne blackmails Blake into fighting a war against the hostile foreign nation of Nivarrin in order to save his infant son. As Blake finds himself roped into Vivienne's diabolical plans, the other aristocrats of Manna City begin to turn against him.
Prate Marshbanks proposed to his future wife on a muggy July night at Pete's Drive-in back in '52. "She said yes to me between bites of a slaw burger all-the-way." A college graduate and daughter of a prominent lawyer, Irene was an unlikely match for Prate, a high school dropout. He lived his married life aware of the question on people's minds: How in the world did a tall, thin, fair-skinned beauty and one of the most respected high school English teachers in all of Greenville County, in all of South Carolina for that matter, wind up married to a short, dark, fat-faced, jug-eared house painter? That their marriage not only survived for fifty years, but flourished, is a source of constant wonder to Prate. Now he faces a new challenge with Irene. From the author of In The Family Way, a novel the Atlanta Constitution called "an instant classic" and the Charlotte Observer praised as "a lovely, moving book," comes a powerful story of hard-earned hope. The Pleasure Was Mine takes place during a critical summer in the life of Prate Marshbanks, when he retires to care for his wife, who is gradually slipping away. To complicate things, Prate's son, Newell, a recently widowed single father, asks Prate to keep nine-year-old Jackson for the summer. Though Prate is irritated by the presence of his moody grandson, during the summer Jackson helps tend his grandmother, and grandfather and grandson form a bond. As Irene's memory fades, Prate, a hardworking man who has kept to himself most of his life, has little choice but to get to know his family. With elegance and skillful economy of language, Tommy Hays renders an unforgettable character in Prate Marshbanks. The Pleasure Was Mine is at once a quietly wrenching portrayal of grief, a magical and romantic story about the power of love, and an unexpectedly moving take on the resilience of family.
A tribute to New York City's most literary borough-featuring original nonfiction pieces by today's most celebrated writers. Of all the urban landscapes in America, perhaps none has so thoroughly infused and nurtured modern literature as Brooklyn. Though its literary history runs deep-Walt Whitman, Truman Capote, and Norman Mailer are just a few of its storied inhabitants-in recent years the borough has seen a growing concentration of bestselling novelists, memoirists, poets, and journalists. It has become what Greenwich Village once was for an earlier generation: a wellspring of inspiration and artistic expression. Brooklyn Was Mine gives some of today's best writers an opportunity to pay tribute to the borough they love in 20 original essays that draw on past and present to create a mosaic that brilliantly captures the quality and diversity of a unique, literary landscape. Contributors include: Emily Barton, Susan Choi, Rachel Cline, Philip Dray, Jennifer Egan, Colin Harrison, Joanna Hershon, Jonathan Lethem, Dinaw Mengestu, Elizabeth Gaffney, Lara Vapnyar, Lawrence Osborne, Katie Roiphe, John Burnham Schwartz, Vijay Seshadri, Darcey Steinke, Darin Strauss, Alexandra Styron, Robert Sullivan With an introduction by Phillip Lopate.
Grayson: If I had to use one word to describe my wife, it would be Mine. Emmalin is my life, my love, and the mother of my child. She's given me more than I deserve, and more than I ever wanted. Nothing ever came easy for us. Fight hard, Fuck harder. Now, someone wants to take it all away from me. Someone has a sordid tale to tell, that's a threat to both me, and my family, and it's one I can't defend. I have to fight back. But how do I fight for everything and prove my innocence when nothing makes sense and lies start to sound like the truth? How do I hold onto the only woman I've ever loved, even if she asks me to let her go? I can't. She's the one I refuse to lose.... Emmalin: Life with Grayson has never been more perfect. But life is also a bitch and then you die.
Summer was mine once. I’d kill for a second chance. I was never allowed to love Summer Sullivan. I loved her anyway. I wasn’t allowed to kiss her. I kissed her anyway. And then I took her heart in my hands and crushed it. Leaving her behind to go to war was unforgivable. I survived—barely. After what I did to her, I deserve to be a broken man with a broken body. I never expected to see her at the veteran’s support office. I never expected for her to run right back into my arms. Now Summer is mine again, but loving me is dangerous. I fell in with a bad crowd when I got back home. Worse than she can imagine. They’re still out to get me. My secrets are deadly, and being with me has put her right in the crossfire.
For years I was lost, bitter, angry at the way my life turned out. I fought hard to find my way back to happiness, and I was almost there. I just needed one push, and it came in the form of Cole Alexander. For one night, we connected in a way neither of us anticipated--an attraction I wasn't ready for. I did what any normal woman on the cusp of the next stage in her life would do. I left, never expecting to see him again. I've never been so wrong in my entire life. Falls Village, Maine was a place meant for second chances, and it became my primary destination, the place that would heal me. Little did I know I'd find the man who had a small part in changing my world mere miles away.