Tessa Gray’s life changes forever when she loses her four-year-old daughter, Abby, in a hit-and-run accident outside her preschool. Once a vivacious, joyful mother and wife, Tessa now spends her days holed up in Abby’s room, sleeping in her bed, clutching Abby’s Tootsie Rabbit stuffed animal—anything to keep her memories close. As Tessa grapples with a terrible grief, made worse by the police’s insistence that the case is unsolvable, she finds solace in Celia Reed, the therapist her husband has pushed her to see, and in the journal she’s keeping, where she compulsively counts the “days without Abby” and maps out her plan for catching the driver who tore her family apart.
As Celia struggles to keep Tessa from getting caught up in a bleak crusade for answers, she finds that their sessions open the door to emotions that she’s spent years ignoring, forcing her to face the rising tensions in her life—her troubled teenage son, her alcoholic ex-husband, and her fragile new marriage. Celia begins to realize that she must come to terms with the tragic mistakes of her past and the choices that have led her family to their own brink of destruction.
A haunting portrait of two women whose lives converge unexpectedly, Life Without Summer illuminates connections between love, marriage, truth, and forgiveness no listener will forget.
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"So well written. I can't recommend it highly enough. Don't be put off by the subject, a mom who is journaling her way through the grief of losing her four-year-old daughter and the mom's therapist's struggles with her own family. Griffin has a gift for writing dialogue captures very different personalities realistically, while seamlessly moving the plot along. One of the best books I have read in a while. Go get this book!"
Nicole (5 out of 5 stars)