Molly Arnette is very good at keeping secrets. She lives in San Diego with a husband she adores, and they are trying to adopt a baby because they can't have a child on their own. But the process of adoption brings to light many questions about Molly's past and her family-the family she left behind in North Carolina twenty years before. The mother she says is dead but who is very much alive. The father she adored and whose death sent her running from the small community of Morrison's Ridge. Her own birth mother whose mysterious presence in her family raised so many issues that came to a head. The summer of twenty years ago changed everything for Molly and as the past weaves together with the present story, Molly discovers that she learned to lie in the very family that taught her about pretending. If she learns the truth about her beloved father's death, can she find peace in the present to claim the life she really wants?
Told with Diane Chamberlain's compelling prose and gift for deft exploration of the human heart, Pretending to Dance is an exploration of family, lies, and the complexities of both.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
You’ve got to love a gripping domestic drama that starts with a cliffhanger. Molly adores her husband, Aidan, but feels guilty about the lies she’s fed him regarding her upbringing. When the married lawyers—who have survived a miscarriage and years of infertility—start the process of adopting a child, Molly’s lies begin to weigh heavily on her. Fans of Jodi Picoult’s novels will gobble up Pretending to Dance, which shifts between the past and the present to build suspense and heighten emotions.
A little less flashbacks to the teen years would have been more to my liking, but for the most part kept my attention throughout.
The storyteller's character could have been deeper, like some of the other characters. Russell and the Father were the most likable to me. The others, not so much. Couldn't give it 3-1/2 stars, so I erred on the side of generosity.
Will try some of authors other books.
Great Story of Love and Family
Pretending to Dance was an amazing story. Taking place during two pivotal times in Molly's life, we uncover her past as she tries to come to terms with it in her future. The summer of Molly 14th year was the one that changed her life forever. Molly experienced so many changes in her life that year that stay with her for the rest of her life. It was a summer full of fun and tragedy, and it haunts her still. This summer is beautifully told and at times it seems like such a magical time of discovery for her.
In the present, Molly has lied about her past and her family to everyone. As she gets ready to adopt a child, she begins to re-visit her past more and more, terrified that it will somehow come out and ruin her chances. Her struggle with this is very real. As the adoption itself begins to falter, she goes into a downward spiral both mentally and physically.I learned so much about open adoption, the pitfalls and the joys. It is such a different process than I had ever imagined.
Her present and past come to a head when she is forced to face her past and address what happened there. While she finds a little of what she expected, things weren't quite as she had thought. And so much has changed since then that it's almost unrecognizable.
This was a beautiful story of a family's love and the things a family may be willing to do to help the children. I think this is a must read for readers of all sorts. There are so many very special elements that you will find a way to connect to the characters and their lives.
*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*