About the book:
Nobody wakes up one morning and decides that today is the day they are going to cheat on their spouse. When the opportunity presents itself however, it ultimately becomes a choice. And that choice, whether good or bad, can have irrevocable consequences.
Ethan and Jessica Harrington are doctors who work alongside fellow doctors Gavin and Sarah Williams. After Jessica has an affair with Gavin, their lives are thrown into turmoil as they deal with the aftermath and subsequent fallout.
For the better part of a year the four of them have been working to piece their marriages back together. Sarah and Gavin are still reeling from a devastating miscarriage, while Jessica and Ethan are hesitantly looking forward to the birth of their first child.
Sarah’s hopes are immediately shattered when she learns how far Gavin’s infidelity has gone. Suddenly thrown into an unwanted independence she fights to find her way.
Jessica struggles to repair her marriage to Ethan as they become parents. But when Ethan, a borderline alcoholic, learns a dark secret, his world steadily begins to crumble. His drinking, fueled by this discovery slowly engulfs him. Jessica’s love for him is only matched by her fear of his temper. With his marriage now in pieces and his sanity questionable, Ethan struggles to come to terms with his alcoholism and face his past.
Theirs is a story of the tremendous amount of love some people have for one another, regardless of the pain that is sometimes inflicted.
This is a story about healing and forgiveness. Although it doesn't happen in the way you would expect.
It's rare that all I want to do is read a book. This story drew me in because it was so powerful at its core. I am not even sure how I stumbled upon it. I think I was on a page for one book that said at the bottom "people who bought this book also purchased..." so I clicked on it and read the description and decided to go for it.
Though this story was much longer than most e-books I normally read, I simply couldn't stop until I finished. If I hadn't had to sleep and work, I would have read it straight through. But I still read it every chance I got. When all was said and done, I loved the story. It has some language and a few pretty steamy scenes in it, but it didn't take away from the value of the novel for me. What I loved about the story was how deep it went and how honest it was. I've never seen a more compelling portrayal of alcoholism and the damage it can do to adults.
For the most part I loved all of the characters. There were times when I didn't like some of them at all, but that's like real life. Sometimes we don't like the people we love. And sometimes we just need to know when to walk away and let someone learn the hard way that they need help.
The ending was fanstastic and I think it worked well for the story. There are people that are good for us and the relationship is healing. There are some people that are like poison to our souls. Ethan's insight about the healing power of forgiveness toward the end was enough to move a reader to tears. I was so glad when he found peace and joy in life again.
Some picky little things that drove me nuts were the excessive use of exclamation marks. Any seasoned writer knows that they are not needed most of the time and should be rarely used. If it hadn't been for all of those marks in the story I would not have believed this was the author's first novel. It was very well-written and other that, had few flaws.
This story engaged not only my head, but my heart. I was afraid - more like terrified - at times as well as extremely sad about situations that occurred. There were no easy answers, but the author had the characters acting in ways that made sense and fit their situations given their lives and what they knew.
More than that, I felt like I knew these people kind of like I knew characters in a soap opera I used to watch many years ago. I often held my breath as they did crazy things that fit the drama of the day and couldn't wait to find out what would happen next. And though the author did not have a pure point of view (in other words there was some head-hopping) she actually did this very well. It's not easy to have multiple viewpoints in a scene and do it well.
I am sad that this story ended, but was excited that a prequel is coming out in 2012. I'm definitely getting it as I want to know how it all began and I know for sure it will be told well. Hopefully it won't have a thousand question marks in the story, but even if it does, I'm sure I'll enjoy it.
When All is Said and Done is published by Amazon Kindle Services and released in 2011.