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Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance
Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel | Alison Espach
"The summer before Sally Holt starts the eighth grade begins as a gloriously uneventful one, full of family trips to the beach and long afternoons at the local pool with her older sister Kathy, which they mostly use as an excuse to ogle Billy Barnes, who works the concession stand there. Their fascination with him is one of the few things the increasingly different sisters have in common. By summer's end Billy and Kathy are an item-an unthinkable stroke of luck that ends in an even more unthinkable tragedy. Set over the course of fifteen years, charting shared history and missed connections, NOTES ON YOUR SUDDEN DISAPPEARANCE is both a breathtaking love story between two broken people who are unexplainably, inconveniently drawn to each other, and a wry, sharply observant coming-of-age story that looks at the ways the people we love the most continue to shape our lives long after they're gone"--
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review
Ibsbadibs
Pickpick

Loved the unique style and tone- really interesting to see the main character grieving and understanding loss at different points of her life. Also seemed super true to big sister little sister relationships. For me anyway. Thumbs up.

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ImperfectCJ
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1) Tagged.
2) There are some I've let linger for a couple of years at least, but I think the longest I've spent reading regularly is probably the five months I spent on Hume's The History of England, Vol. V.
3) It might be the recency effect, but I'm very proud of how I handled a frank conversation about sexuality and romantic relationships with my 18-year-old this week.
@Eggs #WondrousWednesday

Eggs #3 Brava👏🏻👏🏻 11mo
38 likes1 comment
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BarbaraBB
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This is the only QF that‘s different from the #ToB23 one. In the real ToB Notes on your sudden disappearance is up against T3, in the #LitsyToB23 it is Seven Moons vs T3. With more than 20 votes T3 is our winner and therefor our second semi-finalist! The real tournament has its first surprise: Notes advances, which didn‘t make it past the opening round in our tournament!

See All 18 Comments
rmaclean4 Wow!! 1y
Suet624 I had to rush over to the website to read the results because I honestly couldn‘t believe what you were saying. 1y
BkClubCare Surprise! 🎉 1y
BkClubCare I whooped out loud - I love knowing others LOVE Notes! YAY! 1y
jlhammar Sad to see T3 knocked-out in the official tournament, but at least there‘s a chance of it returning as a zombie. Very happy it advances in our version! 1y
RebelReader Very surprised! I liked Notes but like T3 more. 1y
Megabooks No question that T3 is a better book than either it was against. It was one of my favorite books of last year, and it is probably top 10 all time. 1y
Cinfhen I enjoyed the judges comments and appreciated the decision. It was definitely a surprise & I LOVED it!! I wasn‘t as enamored with T3 as many others were so I respect Notes advancing. @jlhammar is right… T3 might sweep back in during the zombie 🧟‍♀️ 1y
Ruthiella I love it when there are surprising upsets like this in the ToB! I enjoyed Notes more than Tx3 or The 7 Moons. But I do have to give props to 7 Moons in that I didn‘t love the experience of slogging through it, but it has really stayed with me. Definitely, Tx3 could zombie. I just didn‘t connect with it emotionally the way other readers did. 1y
Addison_Reads I was surprised by today's choice in the official tournament. Like @Megabooks Tx3 is one of my favorite books, and not just in the ToB. I hope it gets an extra life and some extended playing time thanks to the zombie round. 1y
Larkken Oof! Oy. Maybe I should be happy (?) that everyone adores a book where so much of it reminds me of my cringy inner monologue from high school alongside juicy Hallmark-movie-esque plot developments? I don‘t know if I can believe something so like my inner demons can count as art-adjacent lol 1y
squirrelbrain Of course, Notes is the one book I didn‘t read…trots off to see if it‘s come down in price anywhere. 1y
Readerann I haven‘t read Notes, but am in the middle of Seven Moons and am happy with our decision today! 1y
Hooked_on_books Wow, Notes beat T3?!? I did not see that coming! I‘m even more curious now to read this judgment! 1y
Hooked_on_books The judgement is really thoughtful, as many of them seem to be. I like that. And I‘m happy to see T3 as a zombie, especially as it boots out MPP (though I wish it had booted Babel). 😆 1y
54 likes18 comments
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BarbaraBB
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There it is! The first bomb placed under the #ToB23! Notes wins from Seven Moons because the judge liked both and calls himself “one who roots for the underdog”. And he did, what a surprise!

In the #LitsyToB23 it was a close call as well. However, with two votes in its favour, we literature snobs, made Seven Moons today‘s winner 😉
So we are already drifting apart. Love it!

rmaclean4 Wow...that is a shock. 1y
BarbaraBB @rmaclean4 I am as surprised about the ToB‘a choice as about our! 1y
RebelReader I thought they would pick Moons even though I enjoyed Notes more. 1y
See All 19 Comments
merelybookish I picked Moons (not having read it) because I found Notes kinda dull. 1y
jlhammar Yeah, kind of surprised by this judgement, but don‘t feel strongly about this particular match. I bailed on Notes and probably should have bailed on Seven Moons. 1y
Suet624 I didn‘t read Moons but assumed it would beat Notes. So much for assumptions. 1y
batsy I am surprised by their choice! Didn't read Notes but felt like Seven Moons was a shoo-in. 1y
Jas16 Surprised by this one too. I liked Notes more but really thought Seven Moons would easily win. (edited) 1y
Chelsea.Poole I‘m surprised at how much Notes has stayed with me. I am in agreement with the judge, though I agree-it‘s surprising! 1y
squirrelbrain I didn‘t read Notes as I couldn‘t get hold of it, but didn‘t like Seven Moons. Interesting choices from both sides! 😁 1y
BkClubCare I am happy! And though, some books are more “obvious” (but, are they? Really?!) to win, I dislike the slight condescension in a few of the comments. So you didn‘t like xyz, even thought it weak, but GET OVER IT. Recognize that for some, this book hit the right buttons. Shhheeeeesh. 1y
BkClubCare Sorry, had some buttons pushed. Carry on, 🥺 1y
Cinfhen Wow!!! Surprised like the rest of you!! I didn‘t love Notes and bailed (twice) on Moons but I was expecting the reverse decision- thought for sure Moon would advance in the official tournament and Notes would have won ours. Like @Suet624 so much for assumptions 😁 (edited) 1y
Ruthiella A classic ToB upset! Love it! 😂 1y
Hooked_on_books I was curious but uninvested in this particular decision. As I finished each pair, I jotted down my vote. This is the only one that changed on later reflection. I initially picked Moons, but when we voted I went with Notes, as it had stuck with me more. Interesting results today! 1y
sarahbarnes We literature snobs indeed! 😂 I didn‘t read Notes but I‘m okay with that one advancing in the real tournament. 1y
Larkken I didn‘t like Notes, and thought there were others on the longlist that did young woman‘s Bildungsroman better. Bah 😂 1y
BkClubCare @Ruthiella - my first reaction, too! It all usually falls apart for me anyway, that I love these mini wins. (And I really did enjoy 7Moons very much.) 1y
BkClubCare @sarahbarnes - I just found some positive critiques of Notes and… well, it is just fascinating how books hit or miss with people. 1y
65 likes19 comments
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BookNAround
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Starting another of the #auldlangspine books from @peaknit tonight.

@monalyisha

review
jlhammar
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Bailedbailed

20% in and calling it quits. Not for me. #ToB23

merelybookish Sometimes you just have to bail. 1y
BarbaraBB Especially this year it seems 😀 1y
squirrelbrain Meh, I didn‘t read this one. Mostly because of the so-so reviews and also it‘s still expensive over here. 1y
batsy Yeah, this is among quite a number on the shortlist that isn't really calling out to me. 1y
75 likes4 comments
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Chelsea.Poole
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Pickpick

13 year old Sally comes of age under the all encompassing tragedy of the loss of her older sister, Kathy. Nearly every aspect of Sally‘s life is touched by the absence of her sister, as Kathy was such a huge influence upon her young life. A character study. This is weird but I always age a character based on their names. A “Sally” and a “Kathy” seem like they would be from a different generation than these characters were supposed to be.
#tob2023

Hooked_on_books I can see what you mean about the names, though I didn‘t pick up on that while reading. I liked but didn‘t love this one. I thought it was a good study of grief. 1y
AlaMich I do that too, about the names. It irritates me a bit, irrationally. 1y
See All 23 Comments
jlhammar I totally get what you‘re saying about the names and I agree. I‘m only about 10% through the audiobook. Not hating it, but not liking it all that much either. Kind of sick of hearing about Billy already, but the sister relationship seems nicely drawn. Not sure yet if I‘ll continue or bail. 1y
Chelsea.Poole Also sorry I tagged everyone so many times! Idk what‘s going on with that. Not sure if it‘s litsy or user error 😆 1y
Chelsea.Poole @Hooked_on_books yes! Definitely a study on grief from a different perspective. 1y
Chelsea.Poole @AlaMich yes!!! I mean, I get that there are people with all sorts of names who are all ages, but these characters were probably slightly older than me (based on us presidents/the characters ages) and I know NO ONE named sally or Cathy near my age. I know a few Catherines but they don‘t go by Cathy. I kept checking myself to make sure I was in the right time period lol. I just like authors to stay true to common names of the times, I guess. (edited) 1y
Chelsea.Poole @jlhammar potential spoiler, so look away if you don‘t want to know but: Billy doesn‘t go away..but things do change. So that may influence a bail decision idk 🤷🏼‍♀️ 1y
BarbaraBB That is funny, about the names. I guess I feel that way too in Dutch books but I wouldn‘t know what English names are old fashioned or not. But now that you mention it I totally see it. 1y
Chelsea.Poole @BarbaraBB it really takes me out of the story. But only if it‘s American. Like you said, I wouldn‘t know what names are popular from certain time periods when reading about characters from other countries/cultures in fiction. 1y
Ruthiella I really liked this one too. What did you think of the very end - the scene in the rain? I think it open ended enough for a few different interpretations. 1y
Suet624 Haha! You‘re absolutely right about the names, though I didn‘t catch it at the time. The three main characters all seem to have ‘filler names‘, like they were stand-ins for a name to be determined later. 1y
Cinfhen It‘s so funny you mention the names, definitely too old fashion - I didn‘t mind this book but it‘s not one that will stay with me 1y
squirrelbrain Great review and I love seeing everyone‘s comments! 1y
Cathythoughts Nice review! Sounds like a good one 👍🏻 1y
BkClubCare Now that you mention it… I wonder if I just didn‘t give thought to the names. I sometimes jump right in and don‘t notice things I should — but usually it is when an author doesn‘t use quotes some other punctuation. I never seem to notice! 1y
BkClubCare Oh, and this one is in my top 5 of the TOB. I loved it - heart-breaking and yet has comic moments. (edited) 1y
merelybookish Great review and observation! I also notice names and it can distract me. Kathy made me go hmmmm (She would be a Katie) but I didn't think much of Sally as I have met girls of many different ages with that name. I remember being annoyed by a book where there was a middle aged woman named Mia because Mia is a very year 2000+ name, in my experience. 😂 1y
Chelsea.Poole @Ruthiella I‘m not sure…I do appreciate the fact that the hurricane was “Kathy”. I thought that was clever, in a very unexpected way for me. Could be a bit overdone, but I didn‘t see it that way. Also Billy was an obsession for Sally, so I wasn‘t surprised to see him again/throughout. 1y
Chelsea.Poole @Suet624 yes!! You‘re right! I‘ve thought that a few times myself with fiction—“filler names”. 1y
Chelsea.Poole @Cathythoughts @Cinfhen @squirrelbrain thanks! I did enjoy it…not sure that came across in my review lol. 1y
Chelsea.Poole @BkClubCare agreed it‘s tragic yet not without moments of brevity. So it‘s not too heavy of a read. Also, I often miss details others pick up on as well, it‘s funny what we pick up on as readers! 1y
Chelsea.Poole @merelybookish yes! Although I hesitated to even mention this observation about the names because it‘s so subjective! I didn‘t know if anyone else would agree with these names seeming out of place or if it was just me. 1y
99 likes23 comments
review
cariashley
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Pickpick

I liked this well enough, but it feels like an unusual choice for #tob23. I liked the section about the narrator‘s adult life the best, but that was just a part of the final third. An interesting portrait of how deep grieving affects one family, and a surprisingly easy read given the content.

Chelsea.Poole This is next up for me. I‘m not looking forward to the heavy subject matter. 1y
squirrelbrain Great review. I‘m skipping this, unless it suddenly comes out in the UK at a cheaper price than it currently is. 1y
Ruthiella I had trouble with the first third, but once I got past that, I was really caught up in it. 1y
BarbaraBB I really liked this one but am still wondering what makes it tob-worthy! 1y
43 likes4 comments
review
Cinfhen
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Pickpick

#ToB23 #shortlisted This was an interesting study of a family dealing/living with grief/loss.
It‘s short on action but long on character study. While this book was good, I‘m not sure why it made the shortlist🤷🏼‍♀️
This was my last book from the shortlist - looking forward to discussing with the tournament crew.
#52Books23 #AboutSiblings #DoubleSpin February @TheAromaofBooks

Cinfhen Heads up friends…. @britt_brooke is no longer participating in the #52booksChallenge so kindly remove her name from the tag list 😁 (edited) 1y
See All 26 Comments
Cinfhen @Deblovestoread @BookBelle84 not sure if you received the first tag….xx 1y
Ruthiella I really liked this after I got used to the format/style. It‘s definitely something I normally would not read were it not for the TOB. 1y
Chelsea.Poole I just checked this out from the library. I‘ll get it in a few days. Based on reviews I think this one will work for me because I‘m good with character studies 😊 1y
Librarybelle I‘ve seen lots of mixed reviews about this one. I‘m on the fence about it… #somanybookssolittletime 1y
squirrelbrain I‘m still wavering about this one. It‘s expensive over here and isn‘t yet available on any ‘free‘ apps. 🤷‍♀️ 1y
Cinfhen This was a borrow from #Scribd @squirrelbrain and I‘m glad..,it‘s not a book I‘d re-read @Librarybelle @Chelsea.Poole but it had some merit, I just didn‘t love it. 1y
TheAromaofBooks Great progress!! 1y
sarahbarnes I actually just returned this to the library yesterday without reading it…I just wasn‘t feeling it. 🤷🏻‍♀️ 1y
Cinfhen It‘s a slow burn @sarahbarnes - maybe you‘ll try again before the tournament begins 1y
Cinfhen Thanks,Sarah 😁I‘ve manage to read both my #BookSpin & #DoubleSpin for February @TheAromaofBooks 🙌🏻💗 1y
BarbaraBB So good you‘ve read them all! I just started Mercury but find it sooo boring. And I have Seven Moons still calling out. Not sure if I‘m going to give in 😉 1y
britt_brooke @Cinfhen Sorry, y‘all - challenges are just not for me. 😚😚 1y
Cinfhen I bailed on both Mercury & Seven Moons @BarbaraBB AND The passenger and (edited) 1y
Cinfhen So I REALLY haven‘t read them all 🙈 1y
Cinfhen At least you considered it @britt_brooke but better to know your limitations 😍 1y
TheAromaofBooks Nice!!! Only a week into the month, too!!! 1y
Cinfhen I‘m pretty impressed with myself @TheAromaofBooks I‘m not gonna lie 😜😂😂 1y
Hooked_on_books Hey, nice job on completing! I have 2 left, so I‘m in good shape. 1y
BkClubCare @Ruthiella 👍 Always a top reason I follow the TOB 1y
BkClubCare @Cinfhen 👏 My TOB philosophy is IF I had it in my hands and read some of it (and then read a million contrarion reviews 🤣) I am likely to count it! 1y
Cinfhen Which two @Hooked_on_books ??? 1y
Hooked_on_books Olga and Goose 1y
Cinfhen I think you‘ll enjoy both @Hooked_on_books ♥️🤞🏼 1y
81 likes26 comments
review
Ruthiella
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Pickpick

Yes, the book is a tad too long and the very end a little hokey, but I really liked it despite it being a very melancholy story about a family overwhelmed by grief due to the death of a child/sibling and a coming of age story under that cloud. Once I got past the death, I was hooked by Sally‘s monologue to her dead sister. It‘s also funny from time to time, despite the grieving. Sally has a deadpan sense of humor that jives with my own. #ToB2023

Suet624 Yes, I agree. 1y
Hooked_on_books I thought this was a great exploration of grief. 1y
Cinfhen I‘m looking forward to this one - my last book from the shortlist 💜 1y
See All 17 Comments
Megabooks Glad you enjoyed it. 👍🏻 1y
RebelReader I agree the ending was a bit hokey, but it almost had to be I think. Grief is just too darn sad. 1y
BkClubCare 👏😍😁💫 1y
sarahbarnes Glad you liked it! I‘ve got this one from the library right now and I‘m going to give it a try after I finish Babel. 1y
Ruthiella @Suet624 It‘s always a good feeling when my reading friends feel the same as I do about a book! 😊 1y
Ruthiella @Hooked_on_books Totally. It also made me understand how someone could carry that grief with them over a decade, despite outwardly “moving on”. 1y
Ruthiella @Megabooks Thanks! It‘s always a good feeling when a TOB book doesn‘t feel like homework! 😂 1y
Ruthiella @RebelReader Absolutely. I‘m not saying it wasn‘t the ending I wanted, because I did want it! It was satisfying. 1y
Ruthiella @BkClubCare ☺️🤩 1y
Ruthiella @sarahbarnes I‘ll be interested to hear your thoughts. I did find it a little slow at first, but once I got into the rhythm of Sally‘s voicemail, I sped through it. 1y
BarbaraBB Very good review. I am feeling the same. 1y
squirrelbrain Oh no! I wasn‘t going to read this one after a few iffy reviews but now I think I might need to! 🤦‍♀️ 1y
Ruthiella @BarbaraBB Glad to hear it‘s also working for you. 👍 1y
Ruthiella @squirrelbrain I don‘t think you need to rush out to buy it, but you could it on your list, even if you only get a copy after the tournament is over. 1y
70 likes1 stack add17 comments
review
MicheleinPhilly
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Pickpick

I think that I am just destined to not really love any of the #TOB2023 shortlist with a couple of exceptions. This was a really heart-wrenching portrait of grief but for so much of it, it read like really simplistic YA. 🤷🏻‍♀️ I did “like” it but I am again perplexed by the panel‘s choices.

Megabooks Agree. Plus it was just too dang long. 🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️ 1y
Suet624 Which books did you like on the list? 1y
See All 15 Comments
MicheleinPhilly @Suet624 Thus far Nightcrawling and The Violin Conspiracy. I haven‘t actively disliked anything, I‘ve just been expecting more. 1y
RebelReader This is my first year reading this list, but haven‘t really been super impressed so far. I have a few to go yet so maybe there‘s a gem in there. 1y
MicheleinPhilly @Megabooks The length didn‘t bother me - it didn‘t feel that long to me. I think I just need to take a break from TOB books for a bit. I still haven‘t had a 5 star read yet this year and it is PISSING ME OFF. 1y
MicheleinPhilly @RebelReader I own 4 more and there are a handful I know I‘m skipping but I‘ve been disappointed so far. 1y
Suet624 I hear ya. I‘ve even skipped reading some of the list which is unlike me. 1y
Deblovestoread @RebelReader This my first year too and I‘ve been underwhelmed to say the least. Hoping the ones I have left give me something to cheer about. 1y
squirrelbrain Another meh one. I think I‘m skipping this one as it‘s not cheap over here and I‘ll be annoyed if it‘s rubbish. 1y
Ruthiella I‘m only half way through the shortlist, and while I‘ve enjoyed many, only The Rabbit Hutch has made me sit up and take notice. Still, it keeps me reading books and genres I might not otherwise read. 1y
MicheleinPhilly @Ruthiella That‘s probably the book I‘m most looking forward to! 1y
Ruthiella @MicheleinPhilly I don‘t want your expectations to be too high! 😅 It has is flaws but I found the writing to be engaging. 1y
Hooked_on_books I felt the YA in this, too. I have 2 left to read of the shortlist and am very underwhelmed. 1y
sarahbarnes This one is on my pile and reviews haven‘t inspired me to read it. 1y
77 likes15 comments
review
RebelReader
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Pickpick

This was meh for me until about halfway through and then I thought it got a lot better. It was a soft pick for me. Marriages many times fall apart because people grieve differently and her parents definitely did. I also felt like Sally was all alone and emotionally separated from her family and that‘s why she was so drawn to Billy. #ToBshortlist #gladididntbail

Ruthiella I just got this from the library and read two pages. The premise isn‘t really my favorite topic, however. 1y
Cinfhen This is my last one left from the list- planning to read in February 1y
Suet624 Despite this feeling a bit too long I found myself always interested. 1y
See All 8 Comments
sarahbarnes Great review. I have this one from the library and plan to read it soon. 1y
squirrelbrain Great review! I‘m still not sure if I‘ll get to this one as it‘s not easy to get hold of in the UK. 1y
MicheleinPhilly I‘m reading this one now. 1y
BarbaraBB Yes I felt the same about the family. I enjoyed the book! 1y
Ruthiella I‘m at 70% now and I see what you mean by it picking up. 1y
50 likes8 comments
review
Hooked_on_books
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Pickpick

Much of this study of grief and how it impacts a family is just terrific. But it carries on for far too long, which made me rather bored by the end. If this could have been reduced by about 20%, I think it would have been just phenomenal. Low pick for me. #tob2023

Ruthiella Interesting! I don‘t have an issue with long books, but the story has to merit the length and sometimes it doesn‘t. 1y
Hooked_on_books @Ruthiella Long books are great, but the story unraveled a little here and lost it‘s tightness, so that was the issue. 1y
squirrelbrain This is one I might miss out, as it‘s rather expensive over here….although I did succumb and order Volcano…! 🤔 1y
See All 11 Comments
BarbaraBB I agree with you. It started out great but went on a bit too long. 1y
BarbaraBB @squirrelbrain Haha I was wondering if you would! It‘s a beautiful edition anyhow! (edited) 1y
Hooked_on_books @squirrelbrain I‘m so glad you ordered it! I loved every bonkers bit of it! 1y
Suet624 I felt the same way. 1y
merelybookish Yes, too long! So many okay books could be great some ruthless editing. 1y
Cinfhen That seems to be the overall consensus - needed tighter editing! It‘s the last one left for me. Hopefully I‘ll get to it in February 1y
Megabooks Too long for sure! 1y
Hooked_on_books @merelybookish Yes! Ruthless editing! 1y
58 likes11 comments
review
BkClubCare
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Pickpick

I loved this. I ached for Sally and her attempts to dismiss her grief while being appalled and concerned with her parents‘ grief. It felt very real to me. #TOB2023 #ReadICT Grief

And… may I just say that the TOB always offers a few confounding books. No one really knows how/why they pick what they do… BUT, the joy is in the discussion and seeing a book thru an insight or appreciation you may not have considered. #justsayin#thankyou ⬇️

BkClubCare Also don‘t forget that the whole aim of the TOB is to highlight the absurdity of having a tourney at all! 1y
Ruthiella Absolutely! It‘s all to show how judging books is extremely subjective! I‘m looking forward to reading this one. The author is completely unfamiliar to me. 1y
BarbaraBB Absolutely! And it still is a great way to read and discuss books together, many of which I wouldn‘t have read if it weren‘t for the tournament! 1y
See All 9 Comments
BkClubCare @Ruthiella - I know you know. It‘s been such a thrill to be involved for so long, maybe. This year will be different, without Disqus if they do that. I am GLAD we have this Litsy group, truly!! 1y
Cinfhen I‘ve been looking forward to this book despite the so-so reviews. Glad to read your review!! 1y
Hooked_on_books My hold for the audio on this one just came in, so hopefully I will get to it next week. This is one that‘s been on my radar for a while and I was vacillating on it before it showed up on the shortlist. I‘m curious to see what I think! Glad you liked it! 1y
merelybookish You liked this one more than me, but I do think it's a good portrait of grief, especially how it can trap a family. I just found it too long. 😉 1y
squirrelbrain Glad you liked it - I‘m still not sure if I‘ll read it, as it‘s difficult to get hold of. 1y
Megabooks Glad you enjoyed it! 1y
47 likes9 comments
blurb
Sophronisba
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I didn't really fall for this novel the way I wanted to, but the ending really worked.

review
RealLifeReading
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Pickpick

This book surprised me. I thought it was possibly a mystery/thriller. But this is instead a story about a family‘s struggle with grief after the death of older daughter Kathy. It‘s set over 15 years, told to Kathy by Sally, before, during, & after.
There‘s a melancholic tone throughout, it‘s a story about pain and loss after all. Yet Sally‘s voice manages to be refreshing, somehow humorous, and heartbreakingly honest.

BarbaraBB Great review. I enjoyed this book more than I expected! 1y
64 likes2 comments
review
Deblovestoread
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Pickpick

I enjoyed the first part of the book before the disappearance quite a bit. After there were some jarring (for me) time line jumps and it felt a bit long, so a soft pick for me.

#Pantone23 #Titanite #52Weeks #SurvivalStory TOB23

@Librarybelle @rmaclean4 @Read4life @ravenlee @LaraReads @britt_brooke @triplem80 @AshleyHoss820 @BarbaraBB @jenniferw88 @squirrelbrain @KarenUK @LeeRHarry @Smarkies @Cinfhen @Bluebird @CarolynM @BookBelle84 @Clwojick

Librarybelle I‘m enjoying everyone‘s thoughts on this one. 1y
Clwojick Great job! I‘m planning to read this one this week. (edited) 1y
LaraReads Very nice job on these prompts! 1y
See All 6 Comments
Cinfhen Seems to be the overall consensus!! I‘ll go in with tepid expectations 😔I can‘t borrow it on Scribd until February?!?? Sometimes that subscription service is SO FRUSTRATING!!!!! 1y
squirrelbrain I can‘t even get this one on Scribd @Cinfhen (or anywhere else!) 🤷‍♀️ 1y
Cinfhen So weird how that works @squirrelbrain 😩 1y
61 likes6 comments
blurb
BarbaraBB
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#BookReport 01/23

In this first week I read two #TOB contenders. I liked the tagged one but both aren‘t worth the Rooster imo. The Finlay was delicious: suspenseful and filled with twists. Overall a good start of the year!

squirrelbrain There are so many books that we don‘t think deserve the Rooster! 😬 1y
Cinfhen Agreed about the #Rooster and the Finlay 1y
Megabooks 💯💯💯💯 1y
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Rissreads What is this rooster?🐔 1y
BarbaraBB @Rissreads It is the prize for winning the Tournament of Books (#tob23) that‘ll start in March. 1y
Rissreads So next question is 🤣 What is the #tob23 please? 1y
BarbaraBB @Rissreads It is a tournament in which sixteen books compete with each other. A couple of us read those books and choose their own winner. I‘ll add the announcement: https://themorningnews.org/article/the-2023-tournament-of-books-shortlist-and-ju... 1y
Rissreads It sounds interesting! Go the rooster! 1y
84 likes1 stack add8 comments
blurb
BkClubCare
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Can you see the look 👀 Esther is giving me?! She‘s the best. Starting this for both #TOB23 and for #BookSpinBingo #DoubleBingo and for my local #ReadICT #griefcategory #Challenge

#DogsofLitsy #EstherFest #whpg #griff4short

xicanti Care! I received your Christmas postcard today, along with a personal apology from the United States Postal Service because there was a small rip in one corner! They encased it in a protective envelope and everything. 1y
dabbe What a face! 1y
gossamerchild That is the sweetest look! 😍 1y
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BkClubCare @xicanti - God Bless Postal Services Everywhere 1y
BkClubCare @gossamerchild @dabbe - oh! If I could have presented a video from when I placed the book by her and then when I said, “Esther! Look!” And SNAP! I was laughing. So sweet 1y
sarahbellum Esther! 👀😍 1y
55 likes1 stack add6 comments
review
rmaclean4
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Bailedbailed

First bail of the year. I am more than 50% through this novel and just can't continue. The topic and people are not compelling for me and the writing is flat. Life is too short and my TBR is too long to stick with this one. I am shocked it made it on the list for #ToB23
#52bookclub23

squirrelbrain The more I hear about this, the less inclined I am to read it. It‘s difficult to get hold of here anyway - (d2 for a copy on Amazon, and it‘s not on Kindle, Scribd or similar. 1y
rmaclean4 @squirrelbrain save your money and your time! 1y
See All 9 Comments
jlhammar Good to know and good on you for bailing! I really should do that more often. If my audiobook hold happens to come up at the library before the tournament starts I might give this one a try, but I can't say I'm overly excited for it. 1y
rmaclean4 @jlhammar I am getting better at DNF ing books that dont work for me. My reading has increased now that I have given myself permission to bail when needed. 1y
BarbaraBB Life is too short, you‘re so right. I didn‘t bail on this one but I‘ve got some waiting for me which could easily end in a bail! 1y
tpixie Good for you to know when to bail! Thanks got warning us! 1y
Librarybelle I‘m getting better at bailing on books that do not grab my interest. Life is too short indeed! 1y
Clwojick Oh boy. I have this on my TBR for this months. 😅 1y
37 likes9 comments
review
ImperfectCJ
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Mehso-so

I like the exploration of grief, but three things don't work really well for me. First, some of the characters seem inconsistent in their motivations and personalities. Second, it feels a little too long and meandering. And third, novels always kind of lose me when they depict therapy sessions. They're just not something I enjoy in fiction. #tob2023

Megabooks Yes! Excellent point about inconsistency. 1y
50 likes1 stack add1 comment
blurb
ImperfectCJ
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My language arts classes do a lesson in which we discuss first lines. What makes a good first line? What about a first line makes us want to keep reading? Or what gives us that sinking feeling, like, "Ugh, I have read *this*?" What techniques can we learn from effective first lines to make our own stories more compelling? This got me interested in looking more closely at first lines in the books I read. Hence, my nascent First Line Journal.

Amiable Oh, that sounds like a fabulous tracking project! 1y
quietjenn What a cool idea. 1y
DogMomIrene This project sounds really cool. What a fun way to look back on a year of reading too! 1y
BarbaraBB Very cool idea! 1y
tpixie Great Idea 💡 1y
46 likes5 comments
review
BarbaraBB
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Pickpick

I enjoyed this book but I don‘t think it should be shortlisted for the ToB with so many better ones on the longlist.
The coming of age story of Sally, who loses her sister and best friend by a car accident, is a compelling one. The only one who understands her is Billy, her sister‘s boyfriend and the one who drove the car. An emotional yet humorous story.

#52bookclub23 #funeral #booked2023 #LoveTriangle #ToB23

Pic: Stuttgart, Germany

Cinfhen Love the photo💜I‘m looking forward to this one although my expectations are in check ✔️ 1y
swishandflick I'm with @Cinfhen - great pic! 📸 1y
squirrelbrain I had high expectations for this, but they‘re reducing every time a Litten posts a review! 🤣 1y
See All 26 Comments
Cathythoughts This sounds good enough to try ! Stacked 1y
RebelReader @squirrelbrain I feel the same way, but my library hold came in so I will be tackling it this week. 1y
squirrelbrain It‘s very expensive here in the UK @RebelReader so I‘m going to wait a while…. 1y
Cinfhen @swishandflick Happy New year, Ashley 💕🎉 1y
BarbaraBB @Cinfhen @squirrelbrain @Cathythoughts @RebelReader @swishandflick If you‘re expectations are not too high it‘s a good enough book I think! 1y
sarahbarnes I‘m picking this one up at the library next week and will be interested to try it! 1y
Ruthiella Going in with tempered expectations! Great review! 👍 1y
Suet624 So yeah, good story, not great. Interesting enough. Glad we agree. :) 1y
BarbaraBB @Suet624 Of course we do ❤️❤️ 1y
Megabooks Lovely pic! Yeah, there were so many better stories on the longlist. Personally I liked OS better as far as the “dead teens” choices, but I think there were better choices than both on the longlist. (edited) 1y
Hooked_on_books I look forward to this one. And I‘ve said it before, but you have the best pictures! 1y
Aimeesue @BarbaraBB Keeping my expectations mid- range! Thanks for the tip 😋 1y
BarbaraBB @Megabooks I agree, I liked Ocean State better too. Both are good not great I think. 1y
BarbaraBB @sarahbarnes @Ruthiella @Aimeesue Looking forward to your reviews and how this book will go in our tournament! 1y
BarbaraBB @Hooked_on_books Thank you so much. My photos are kind of a visual diary to me 🤷🏻‍♀️😘 1y
rmaclean4 Just started this one yesterday. Feels like it will be a quick read. 1y
Librarybelle Sounds intriguing…the cover alone sparks my curiosity every time I see it 1y
BarbaraBB @rmaclean4 It is! It‘s an easy rather fun read despite the subject 1y
BarbaraBB @Librarybelle I love the cover too! 1y
LaraReads Agreed! Awesome cover & pic! 🎡 1y
Deblovestoread Starting this one today as Libby hold came in. 1y
BarbaraBB @Deblovestoread I hope you‘ll enjoy it! 1y
merelybookish It's not a bad book but it's no standout. But John Warner, one of the TOB commentators, is a big fan. 1y
79 likes1 stack add26 comments
review
Suet624
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Pickpick

Going in with low expectations because of some of the reviews helped, I think. Sally‘s sister dies in a car driven by Billy, the sister‘s boyfriend. The various experiences and emotions of Sally, her parents, and Billy stumbling through life over the years following the death felt honest and relatable. It‘s a surprise that it‘s on the #TOB23 shortlist but I enjoyed it.

RebelReader I picked this one up at the library so will get to it sometime in the next three weeks. 1y
sarahbarnes I‘m picking this one up from the library soon! My expectations are also not super high, and I appreciate your review. (edited) 1y
Suet624 @RebelReader I'll be interested to see what you think. I decided to read it as quickly as I could so I wouldn't get distracted by other books. That seemed to help. :) 1y
See All 25 Comments
Suet624 @sarahbarnes The TOB readers seem split on it. I'm curious where you'll fall on it. 1y
Megabooks Great review! 1y
Ruthiella I‘ll take enjoyable! I‘m curious to see where I land. 1y
Hooked_on_books I‘ve gone back and forth on this one since it came out, but of course the TOB is pushing me to read it. My audio hold should come in a few weeks. My expectations are tempered much like yours were and looks like that‘s a good thing! 1y
Suet624 @Megabooks Thanks! 1y
Suet624 @Ruthiella Me too! 1y
Suet624 @Hooked_on_books honestly, there‘s a part of me that wonders if I may remember this one more than a few of the other TOB‘s I‘ve read. 1y
Hooked_on_books For me, that‘s the mark of a great book, if it sticks with you. I had a few on my end of year best list that I had only rated as 4 stars, but I bumped them to 5 since they stuck with me so well. 1y
BarbaraBB I am reading this one right now too / and am enjoying it as well! Happy new year my dear friend ❤️❤️ 1y
Suet624 @Hooked_on_books Yes, I've done that before too. I felt kind of sheepish about it too, like I should have recognized how good it was at the time. :) 1y
Suet624 @BarbaraBB A very happy new year to you as well, you dear sweet friend. Thank you for always letting me know you care about what I have to say. 💜 💜 💜 1y
Cinfhen I‘m looking forward to this one!! But the only complaint I‘ve seen is length…. That it drags?!! I‘m glad to hear you enjoyed it!! Happy New Year, my fellow crab 🦀 1y
Suet624 @Cinfhen same to you, sweet Cindy, voracious reader, Litsy pioneer and superstar. May 2023 be full of so many good things. 1y
Cinfhen Awwww 🥰Thank you, Sue and all the best 😘 1y
batsy Happy New Year, Sue! 💕🎉 Wishing you all of the good things in 2023. 1y
squirrelbrain Great review! I initially had high hopes for this, but they are being tempered each time I see a review. Also, it‘s not easy to get hold of in the UK and is very expensive so I‘ll have to wait and see…. Happy New Year, Sue! 1y
Cathythoughts Happy New Year ♥️ 1y
Reggie Happy New Year, Sue! Wishing you nothing but the best reds this year. 1y
Suet624 @Reggie Same to you, Reggie! I know you didn't want me to make a lot of noise about you sending me a present, so I didn't. But I hope you know how much I appreciate it. 1y
Suet624 @batsy thank you for your lovely wishes and may this year be one that you remember in the future for all the wonderful things that took place in your life. 1y
Suet624 @squirrelbrain I defintely wouldn't purchase this book. Maybe see how far it advances on the short list. Best wishes to you for a wonderful 2023. 1y
Suet624 @Cathythoughts Same to you!!! 1y
64 likes25 comments
review
Jas16
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Pickpick

When Kathy‘s sister suddenly dies the only person who understands her and her grief is her sister‘s boyfriend. While they struggle to heal and move on, they grow closer and closer. I am glad I chose audio for this book and was able to dip in and out because, while I cared about Kathy, I would have been frustrated otherwise with how overly long and one note it was. I still reached the end and thought, “Was that all?” A light pick. #tob23

BarbaraBB It seems a bit disappointing to many. I‘ll read it soon. 2y
Jee_HookedOnBookz Hi Jennifer. How are you? Was wondering if you received my latest email? 1y
Jas16 @Jee_HookedOnBookz Hi Jee! I responded last Wednesday. I can resend if it never went through. I received your card today as well which was so lovely. I adore the bookmark. 1y
Jee_HookedOnBookz Ok finally got your email! 🙏🏼 Wonder why I didn't receive it the first time. And so happy to know you've also just received the card! Glad you like the bookmark 🙂 I'll reply your email. Take care, my friend 💕 Happy Holidays to you! 1y
41 likes1 stack add4 comments
review
merelybookish
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Pickpick

Sally adores her beautiful, fun older sister Kathy & Kathy's popular basketball-star boyfriend. But when a teenage Kathy dies suddenly, Sally's world is destroyed. A story about coming of age amidst grief & how it twists and stunts people, relationships, & families. It's also about finding a life in spite of loss.
A soft pick. I was interested at times but it also got bogged down by minutiae. I agree with @Megabooks that it is just too long!

Ruthiella Bummer! Especially when there are so many stronger contenders to choose from. 2y
See All 15 Comments
Hooked_on_books I‘ve gone back and forth on this one since it published, just not sure if I wanted to read it or not. I‘ll give it a try, but my expectations are terribly high. 2y
BarbaraBB This‘ll be my next shortlist book, I‘ll temper my expectations! 2y
Jas16 I just finished this one too and agree that it was too long. 2y
sarahbarnes Great review - if I decide to read it I will keep this in mind! 2y
Cinfhen I was and am looking forward to this one but the poor editing will definitely be an issue for me!!! I found too many books are unnecessarily long!!! #petpeeve 2y
Megabooks This is one of my least favorites in the #tob. 🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️ and agree that it was entirely too long!! (edited) 2y
merelybookish @Ruthiella Yes, it's not bad but also not great. Or weird. I can stand behind weird. 1y
merelybookish @Hooked_on_books It's a perfectly fine book. It's just not an exciting book. But maybe it will exceed your expectations. 1y
merelybookish @Jas16 Yes, could slash 50 pages. Easy! 1y
merelybookish @sarahbarnes Thanks! I wonder if you might connect with it more than I did. 1y
merelybookish @Cinfhen 💯 So many books need a ruthless editor! 1y
merelybookish @Megabooks I think if it had been tightened, it would have been more effective. There's good material there...but it's diluted. 1y
62 likes15 comments
blurb
MicheleinPhilly
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Heads up again, American TOB-ers! #TOB2023

squirrelbrain Gah! Hope it becomes available in the UK soon. 🤞 2y
Aimeesue Thanks for posting! I would've missed it! 2y
39 likes2 comments
review
Addison_Reads
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Mehso-so

#ToB23 #ToB2023

Because of the title I was expecting a bit of a mystery in this read, but I was wrong.

This is a heartbreaking tale of grief and codependent relationships. The story is told through Sally's perspective as she grows up in the shadow of her older sister.

For me, had this been shorter I probably would have enjoyed it more.

BarbaraBB It seems a so-so read for most Littens. I had high expectations but I guess I have to lower them. 2y
Ruthiella Maybe if we expect less, we‘ll enjoy it more @BarbaraBB (edited) 2y
BarbaraBB @Ruthiella That‘s true! Let‘s hope it‘ll work! 2y
jlhammar Good to know! I‘m in line for the audiobook from my library so will probably only give it a try if my turn comes up before March. 2y
Chelsea.Poole Sounds rather disappointing. 🫤 2y
41 likes5 comments
blurb
merelybookish
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I've only read 2 books on the #TOBshortlist so lots of catching up to do. Starting here.

squirrelbrain Enjoy! This is one of the two I can‘t get hold of (yet). 2y
BarbaraBB I am so intrigued by this cover but haven‘t been able to purchase a copy either! 2y
merelybookish @squirrelbrain @BarbaraBB I don't know anything about it which is why I chose it! Plus available on my app. 2y
Megabooks I wasn‘t impressed by this, but I hope you like it more! 2y
merelybookish @Megabooks I saw your review after I started. I have little patience for overlong books so we'll see. 😬 2y
43 likes5 comments
review
angel1
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Pickpick

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
This is one of those books where the title threw me off..I thought it was going to be a thriller BUT it's not! Such a heartbreaking story about 2 sisters and a boyfriend that does keep you entertained and connected to this family. It is kinda one speed throughout the whole book though, I kept turning the page expecting a twist.

28 likes1 stack add
review
peaKnit
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Pickpick

This book has echoes of Judy Blume for me, I read everything she wrote when I was a kid, elementary school,and middle school. There is something aching in the voice of the author through the main character that I just felt drawn to. I enjoyed this book about broken people. They earned being broken and I am sad for them, rooting for them to find their way.

23 likes1 stack add
review
kbuggle
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed this one.. the relationship of two sisters, narrated by the younger one speaking to the older. The blurb on the front from Claire Lombardo says it best.. "Heartbreaking and funny, often in the same sentence." This one will stick with me for a while.

review
Megabooks
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Mehso-so

This book was fairly tedious but not entirely unenjoyable. (I‘m really selling you on it, right? 😂) It WAS entirely too long, though.

Sally is obsessed with her sister, Kathy, and her sister‘s boyfriend, Billy. When the unimaginable happens, Sally and Billy are left to pick up the pieces. The book follows their strange, codependent bond through the years.

Cinfhen I started it on audio and I wasn‘t feeling it / glad I bailed early 😁 2y
Megabooks @Cinfhen yeah, apparently this is the time of mediocre 12 hour audiobooks because this wasn‘t as good I‘d hoped, but I just finished and am still thinking about it. 2y
74 likes2 comments
review
Erinreadsthebooks
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Pickpick

Fragmented thoughts: underlying sadness, coming of age, loss and grieving, character driven, flashes of humor, tiny lull in the middle, strong start and finish, a definite pick, autoread author now. The comparison to Tell the Wolves I‘m Home is spot on, and I really liked her other novel, The Adults. Solid read 💪

42 likes3 stack adds
review
Amiable
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Pickpick

A strong start that started to lose its way in the second half, IMO. However, the use of the second person was intriguing and effective. I gave it 3/5 stars (which means I liked it but I won‘t be giving it out for Christmas presents).

review
suvata
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Pickpick

This book was beautifully written but so sad. Like watching a train wreck, I couldn‘t stop watching (reading).

Sally spends much of that summer at the pool, watching in confusion and excitement as her older sister, Kathy, falls deeper in love with Billy—until a tragedy leaves Sally's life forever intertwined with his.

review
KristiAhlers
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Pickpick

Despite the fact that there are some heavy points to the storyline this still manages to be a book with heart and will make a great summer read and you‘ll find yourself laughing and smiling. #summerread

melzen Sounds great 👍 will pick it up for sure 2y
41 likes2 stack adds1 comment
review
Lauren.Archer
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Pickpick

This book has started to show up on lot‘s of summer reading lists and it is entirely worth the hype. There is sadness, but a lot humor that Espach provides. So glad I received a copy of this book.

70 likes5 stack adds
blurb
KristiAhlers
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My friend and I always have Wobbly Wednesday Adventures. Today we ate at The Fountain on Locust this amazing 1920‘s themed restaurant and then headed over to a independent bookstore. This was my haul today! 💜 me some book happiness!

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kyraleseberg
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We usually order chicks from a hatchery but due to the uncertainty that continues with the USPS, we decided to hatch out our own this year and it has been an incredible experience! 🥰🐣
Tonight I'm starting the tagged ARC I won in a Goodreads giveaway.

AmyG Wow. 2y
EvieBee How awesome! 2y
DivineDiana Wonderful! 2y
29 likes3 comments
review
abookishbutterfly
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Pickpick

Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance proved to be a well-crafted, insightful story that will easily resonate with anyone who has experienced significant loss. It‘s rich in all that makes us human and I loved being found in it for a while.

My full review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/4369140636

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abookishbutterfly

“It was only when Dad ordered mom to stop crying that I understood we were bullies. We ordered her to be happy as if we knew what it meant to be happy.”

blurb
kyraleseberg
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Woke up to a Goodreads win! I was on a roll a couple years ago with wins and then they suddenly stopped 🤷‍♀️
I'm happy to start the year with this book! 🎉