A recently widowed mother of two, Sylvie Bates-McAllister finds her life upended by a late-night phone call from the prestigious private school founded by her grandfather where her adopted son, Scott, teaches. Allegations of Scott's involvement in a hazing scandal cause a ripple effect, throwing the entire family into chaos. For Charles, Sylvie's biological son, it dredges up a ghost from the past who is suddenly painfully present. For his wife, Joanna, it forces her to reevaluate everything she's hoped for in the golden Bates-McAllisters. And for Scott, it illuminates harsh truths about a world he has never truly felt himself a part of.
But for all the Bates-McAllisters, the call exposes a tangled web of secrets that ties the family together: the mystery of the school hazing, the event that tore Charles and Scott apart the night of their high school awards ceremony, and the intended recipient of a certain bracelet. The quest to unravel the truth takes the family on individual journeys across state lines, into hospitals, through the Pennsylvania woods, and face-to-face with the long-dormant question: What if the life you always planned for and dreamed of isn't what you want after all?
Family drama! Scandal! Secrets and Lies! Wow! I felt like I was reading a soap opera script, which is a good thing. Who doesn't love a good soap filled with all those crazy dramatics and juicy story lines that just keep you coming back for more? I do! Actually, I haven't seen a soap since I was in grad school and I got hooked on Eastenders and Hollyoaks - I was studying in England at the time and those were my vice. Anyhow, Sara Shepard's novel, Everything We Ever Wanted filled me with the same joy I would get from my evening fix of watching those soaps. Except, those shows went on for ages and this book was a one day read.
And what a good day of reading it turned out to be. Shepard's writing is great! Its engaging, solid and truly gripping. I didn't want to stop turning the pages. As for the characters, they were extremely uncommunicative with one another, which of course, made me frustrated with them, but also eager to find out what they would do next. Now, I don't want to give anything away with regards to the plot, because the fun in finding out the secrets is to read it for yourself. All I can say is that this is one family you want to read all about. Their story is entertaining, suspenseful and very interesting.
I would definitely recommend Sara Shepard's Everything We Ever Wanted to anyone and everyone - especially those who love a good family drama.
Thank you to TLC Book Tours and the publisher for providing me with a copy of the book!