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In a story that illustrates the long-term effects of family trauma, Karen Rose Smith manages to bring a family’s pain into the open as they work to heal those long-standing wounds.
For nearly 30 years of silence after the abduction of her little sister, Claire has held a wound: nourished it with the complacency and inattention of her parents, and now word has come that her long-lost little sister may have been found. Particularly poignant is the 5 year old Claire being ignored in the midst of the commotion, and her oft repeated “take care of your sister” that replays in her head. Although that passage is only the prologue, the emotional impact is visceral and sets the tone for a roller-coaster ride where everyone is victimized and only communication and peeling the scab off that wound will heal them forever.
Now Claire is herself a parent of a teenaged girl, Shara: distanced from her own mother and estranged from her father since her parent’s divorce shortly after her sister’s disappearance. This ‘break’ in the case shocks everyone: for who is really prepared for the emotional turmoil that must be present when this much time has passed. Not to mention that Shara is just 16 and full of angst and bad judgment, and runs away from home. During the nightmare days when Claire is searching for her daughter, her neighbor provides sense and solace, along with his steady friendship a romance starts to blossom.
Narration provided by Diane Piron-Gelman and her voice works in her perfectly enunciated and modulated way to present the story, emphasize the emotional content, and not over-dramatize individual voice characteristics that detract from the story. This is the third book that I have reviewed narrated by her, and the quality and presence she brings to the story as she presents the author’s words is outstanding.
This isn’t a romance story, although there is romance. It’s not just a mystery story, or a story of redemption and revelations: it is a story about the human condition and the power of communication and acceptance and the power of family – however you define it.
I received an AudioBook copy from the author for purpose of honest review for the Heard Word. I was not compensated for this review, all conclusions are my own responsibility.