Leave Me; Gayle Forman
Algonquin - 2016
Maribeth Klein is a 40-something wife, mother to 4 year-old twins and career woman who tries to be all to all people. Her health suffers until one day she realizes she's had a heart attack and requires surgery.
When she finds recovering from surgery and taking care of her own needs extremely difficult with her family still depending on her, she decides to flee. Without any prior discussions she leaves her husband and kids to fend for themselves. She leaves NYC for Pittsburg while she heals and tries to find out about herself and her earliest roots -- she was adopted. WHAT?
This novel was a very quick read with nice short chapters and, while I think many overextended moms dream about escaping, few actually do so without some discussion at least. I just couldn't understand Maribeth, instead of feeling grateful for making it though surgery she becomes resentful and bitchy. She never talks about her feelings and needs with her mother or spouse and just takes off. I guess somewhat in MB's defense, her husband Jason, seemed a bit aloof and neither made any effort to communicate and understand the others needs. I think the author missed the mark by never developing her characters in a way that would make them more real and sympathetic. In addition, the ending resolved itself way too easily to me.