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Four sisters come to terms with the death of their mother over the course of one year, buoyed and buffeted by the letters and journal she left behind to guide them. Eldest daughter Lisa reaches a moment of truth with her boyfriend-to marry or not. Stoic Jennifer is at a crossroads in her marriage, complicated by the decision whether to have a baby. Amanda, consumed with wanderlust, wonders why she's always running away and considers what it would take for her to stay. And the youngest, 16-year-old Hannah, struggles to navigate her turbulent teenage years, mourning her mother while trying to comfort her father. Noble's fourth novel (after Alphabet Weekends) is a bittersweet yet ultimately uplifting story of love, family, and the bonds between mothers and daughters and among sisters. Letters and journal entries are sprinkled throughout the narrative, expanding the novel's focus to include the family's history from the very beginning and making for a sweeping, engaging, and comfortable women's fiction choice. Highly recommended for all public libraries.-Amy Brozio-Andrews, Albany P.L., NY Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
Noble (The Reading Group) hits her stride in her tearjerker fourth novel. Before Barbara Forbes, a mother of four, succumbs to terminal cancer, she leaves words of wisdom for her four daughters in the form of letters to each of them. In the year following Barbara's death, her daughters draw strength from her words and from each other as they move forward with their lives. Lisa, the eldest, is advised to "let someone look after [her]" for a change. Jennifer, "fragile and hard to reach," struggles with an unraveling marriage. Free-spirited Amanda is thrown for a loop by a family secret, and teenaged Hannah, experiencing her first taste of rebellion, is reminded that she still has a lot of growing up to do. Though Barbara's life-is-short aphorisms are nothing new, her sharp wit and distinctive voice is a nice complement to the four nuanced stories of coping with death. (Apr.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.