5 stars for The Sum of Our Sorrows by @LisetteBrodey #literaryfiction #familylife #grief #bookreview
Title: The Sum of Our Sorrows
Author: Lisette Brodey
Genre: Literary Fiction, Family Life Fiction
In an idyllic suburb in Northern California, tragedy strikes the Sheppard family when Abby, the mother of three daughters and wife to Dalton, is killed in a car accident. Charlotte, the middle daughter, is in the car with her mother and survives without physical injury but remains deeply scarred on the inside. Dalton tells Lily, his eldest daughter, that she must sacrifice long-awaited college plans and put her life on hold to take care of her sisters. Lily is torn between her devotion to family and an increasing need to find her place in the world — but how can she leave, knowing her family may crumble? Will her presence eventually cause more problems than it resolves? The Sum of our Sorrows reveals how the aftermath of a family tragedy can precipitate sorrows never imagined. It is a tale of grief, hope, healing, coming-of-age, friendship, and survival. It is also a love story of two broken souls living through pain in search of better days and the renewal of one’s spirit. NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I write characters as I hear them speak to me. Some of these stories contain non-gratuitous expletives and sexual references. This book also contains some situations that may be triggering to some readers. If this is not to your liking, please don't read this book. Thank you.
In the blink of an eye, the Sheppard family is torn asunder. Abby, devoted wife and mother, is killed in a car accident. Her daughter, Charlotte, survives the accident without physical harm but what lies beneath the surface? Lily, the eldest daughter, must stay at home and help raise her two sisters. She’s torn between family love and making her own way in the world. What would her mother want her to do? As each member of the family deals with grief, pain, loss, memories, moving on, they must come to grips with life after Abby or their sorrows will drown their souls.
The Sum of Our Sorrows is a heart-wrenching piece of fiction with roots in real life. From the beginning, my soul ached for this family. As someone who has survived the sudden death of a parent, the emotional trauma each character deals with is authentic and realistic. Lisette Brodey is a gifted writer and her ability to connect with readers is impressive. There were times where I was so engrossed in the story, I forgot what I was doing. The plot moves at a good pace, not too rushed, with characters and dialogue I couldn’t stop reading. When I finished reading, I cried. An emotional story, The Sum of Our Sorrows brings into focus the magnitude of the human spirit. For some readers, it will be a life-changing read. For others, it will give renewed hope. I thoroughly enjoyed it and look forward to reading more from Lisette Brodey. Fans of family dramas and intelligent women’s fiction will love The Sum of Our Sorrows. Highly recommend!
My Rating: 5 stars
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Lisette was born and raised in the Philadelphia area. She spent ten years in New York City, and now resides in Los Angeles. She’s a multi-genre author of nine novels and one short story collection: Crooked Moon (General/Literary Fiction); Squalor, New Mexico (Coming-of-Age/Literary Fiction); Molly Hacker Is Too Picky! (Women's Fiction/romantic comedy), The Desert Series: Mystical High; Desert Star; and Drawn Apart (YA paranormal/magical realism), Barrie Hill Reunion (Literary Fiction); Hotel Obscure: A Collection of Short Stories (Literary Fiction), Love, Look Away (Women's Fiction/romantic comedy), and The Sum of our Sorrows (Contemporary Fiction.) In addition to her nine novels and one short story collection, two more of Lisette’s short stories are published in an anthology: Triptychs (Book 3, The Mind’s Eye Series.)
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Reviewed by: Mrs. N