The Idea of You by Amanda Prowse
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Disclaimer: As a member of NetGalley, I received this galley in exchange for an honest review.
Part 1: From The Book Cover
With her fortieth birthday approaching, Lucy Carpenter thinks she finally has it all: a wonderful new husband, Jonah, a successful career and the chance of a precious baby of her own. Life couldn't be more perfect.
But becoming parents proves much harder to achieve than Lucy and Jonah imagined, and when Jonah's teenage daughter Camille comes to stay with them, she becomes a constant reminder of what Lucy doesn't have. Jonah's love and support are unquestioning, but Lucy's struggles with work and her own failing dreams begin to take their toll. With Camille's presence straining the bonds of Lucy's marriage even further, Lucy suddenly feels herself close to losing everything…
This heart-wrenchingly poignant family drama from bestselling author Amanda Prowse asks the question: in today's hectic world, what does it mean to be a mother?
Part 2: Recommendation
The Idea Of You by Amanda Prowse is a well-written, heart-wrenching, piece of fiction that is somewhat close to hitting home on a personal level for me in the sense that being a married woman, I'm expected to pop out children. In the seven years that I've been married to my amazing husband, it hasn't happened and the pressure is still there to the point where I've started avoiding physically attending baby showers (that and because I'm a shy, introvert). I'm on the fence about having children of my own because I honestly feel that I'm selfish and self-centered (to a degree) where I'll be classified as a horrible mother if I ever have children (I already have such a high standard of expectation for my future child's behavior, character, creativity and intellect that it would be impossible and super stressful for said future child to meet). I'm awkward around humans especially kids and I prefer the company of dogs, books and older people. I'd rather not have kids and just be the greatest aunt in the world to my nephews but my husband still hopes for at least one child (or triplets).
With that said, every month that goes by, I can relate to what Lucy goes through: the disappointment, heart-break, pain and depression that follows every one of her miscarriage. Because of this book, I now know what it feels like to have that home test kit show that you're pregnant only to find out that the baby you've been hoping for does not have a heartbeat and you end up with another miscarriage. I haven't been there and I hope to never know such pain especially the pain that would cause my husband. I would not wish such pain on anyone.
Lucy's tumultuous journey to motherhood and accepting her reality is not exactly a happy one but inspiring nonetheless in the sense that women who can't have children can still have that sense of fulfillment in other ways: by loving the children around you as if they were your own (or you can always adopt a baby). It is definitely a hard lesson to learn and even harder to apply in real life especially when I see how much my husband enjoys being around our little nephew.
In conclusion, The Idea Of You by Amanda Prowse did have a big twist, which I did enjoy but this book is not for everyone especially for those who like highly satisfyingly good endings. This has a sad but good ending. All the supporting characters are well developed, the plot is a bit slow and sometimes I feel like the tension in the story was added on just for the sake of having a bit of drama. The way the end of the chapters was laid out with a sort of journal entry-ish style was a bit confusing but it does clear up in the end, so that part was okay. Overall, it was a good book and definitely geared towards women (and their loving partners) who are struggling with the pain of miscarriage(s) or their inability to have children of their own.
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