Beth has the perfect home life until the unthinkable shatters her world. Her husband admits to having an affair, and leaves her and her three children. Not knowing how to cope, she begins writing again, something she hasn’t done in years. She writes a story about a young boy with autism who cannot speak or make eye contact, but enjoys life through his own experiences and emotions. The inspiration is sudden, and unexpected, but Beth falls in love with the little boy and his unique perspective on life, and she knows she has to tell his story.
After losing her eight year old autistic son, Olivia retreats to Nantucket to find a little peace, and to search her soul with some difficult questions. What was the purpose of her son’s life? Had he been he happy? Did he even know that she loved him? Struggling with her faith, she is unsure that she will ever find the answers. Olivia seeks to make a new life for herself through portrait photography, where she befriends Beth, who shares an unfinished copy of her book with Olivia. The similarities between the two boys is unmistakable, even down to the name Anthony. Olivia can’t believe what she is reading- but the book isn’t finished yet, it can’t be. And at her insistence, Beth knows, there’s still one chapter left to write.
This story was hauntingly beautiful. Lisa Genova paints a picture of unbearable loss and heartache that is overcome by redemption and hope. I have to admit that I cried a lot during this book, especially at the ending, which was the perfect expression of true love. You don’t have to be a mother to love this book, or to understand the depth of emotion it shares. In fact, I’m pretty sure anyone who reads this book will love it, I certainly did!
Rating: 5 stars
I received a free copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads in exchange for an honest review.