WITHOUT A BACKWARD GLANCE by Kate Vietch was read for the Just4theHelluvit Challenge.
From the back of the book:
On a stifling Christmas Eve in 1967, the lives of the McDonald children - Deborah, Robert, James, and Meredith - changed forever. Their mother, Rosemarie, told them she was running out to buy some lights for the tree. She never came back. The children were left with their father, and a gnawing question: Why had their mother abandoned them?
Over the years, the four siblings have become practiced in concealing their pain, remaining close into adulthood, and forming their own families. But long-closed wounds are reopened when a chance encounter brings James face-to-face with Rosemarie after nearly forty years. Secrets that each sibling has locked away come to light as they struggle to come to terms with their mother's reappearance, while at the same time their beloved father is progressing into dementia. Veitch's family portrait reveals the joys and sorrows, the complexity and ambiguity of family life, and poignantly probes what it means to love and what it means to leave.
I just don't know about this book. I liked the premise of the book - how would an adult react to finding a parent who left so many years ago. But I don't think I agree with the author on how the adult children would react.
Without giving away too much of the book, I don't believe an adult would be as understanding and forgiving. I could see a younger person - possibly into their 20's - being more open to a renewed relationship, but not someone in their late 40's who has had time to move on without the missing parent.
I did like the different characters in the book - most of them. I didn't like the older daughter, Deborah, at all. But I think she was written to be an unlikeable character. The other 3 siblings had problems, but were able to work through them and become better people.
Overall, I enjoyed the book, but I just didn't agree with the author's viewpoint.