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{October 18, 2011}   ARC Review: You Are My Only by Beth Kephart

From Goodreads: Emmy Rane is married at nineteen, a mother by twenty. Trapped in a life with a husband she no longer loves, Baby is her only joy. Then one sunny day in September, Emmy takes a few fateful steps away from her baby and returns to find her missing. All that is left behind is a yellow sock.

Fourteen years later, Sophie, a homeschooled, reclusive teenage girl is forced to move frequently and abruptly from place to place, perpetually running from what her mother calls the “No Good.” One afternoon, Sophie breaks the rules, ventures out, and meets Joey and his two aunts. It is this loving family that gives Sophie the courage to look into her past. What she discovers changes her world forever. . .

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This was an interesting look at the life of those dealing with a kidnapping.  I’ve never thought of what life would be like if a loved one went missing, and I think Kephart does a phenomenal job really reaching into the mind of a frantic mother.  Although Emmy was somewhat annoying on multiple occasions, her reactions, to me, seem valid.  She is almost psychotic in a way, causing her to make bad choices, which was irksome, but made my truly feel sorry for her.  Although I wasn’t able to connect with her on a deeper level, I think her character is, in fact, very real. 

I enjoyed Sophie’s story much more than Emmy’s.  Emmy’s story was completely depressing, but Sophie’s was a little bit lighter.  Sophie is now at an age where she begins to question things around her; to crave attention from others, and watching her slowly pull away from her overprotective “mother” was interesting.  However, it was a very slow process, and at times I found myself yelling at Sophie to get it done and over with.  I do understand her trepidation, especially as she was brought up to fear others, but, truth be told, I found this a little draining as Sophie took such a long time making her decisions. 

I have to admit that I wasn’t too impressed with the ending, either.  I thought it was a little abrupt and I really wanted more.  I was expecting to see the two stories intersect at some point and a reconciliation to take place, but I was disappointed to find that there was none.  All in all, I’d have to give this novel two and a half stars.

 

 Egmont USA has been extremely gracious in allowing me to read an ARC of this novel, via Netgalley, prior to its release on October 25, 2011.

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