About the book: (from the publisher) A win brought them together, but loss may tear them apart.
When the sound of sirens cuts through a cool fall night, the small town of Worthy, Georgia, hurtles from triumph to tragedy. Just hours before, they’d watched the Wildcats score a winning touchdown. Now, they’re faced with the deaths of three cheerleaders—their promising lives cut short in a fatal crash. And the boy in the other car—the only one to survive—is believed to be at fault. As rumors begin to fly and accusations spin, allegiances form and long-kept secrets emerge.
At the center of the whirlwind are four women, each grappling with loss, regret, shame, and lies: Marglyn, a grieving mother; Darcy, whose son had been behind the wheel; Ava, a substitute teacher with a scandalous secret; and Leah, a cheerleader who should have been in the car with her friends, but wasn’t. If the truth comes out, will it bring redemption—or will it be their downfall?
About the author: Marybeth Mayhew Whalen is the author of several novels, including When We Were Worthy and The Things We Wish Were True. She speaks to women’s groups around the United States and is the cofounder of the popular women’s fiction site www.shereads.org. Married for twenty-six years, she and her husband, Curt, live in North Carolina with their six children, ranging from young adult to elementary age. Although Marybeth spends most of her time in the grocery store, she occasionally escapes to scribble some words and work on her next novel.
Genre: Fiction/Women’s FictionWomen's fiction for fall, @MarybethWhalen's best novel yet @SheReadsBookCLB #bookrec Click To Tweet
My take: Despite its grim concept, I found Marybeth Whalen’s latest novel to be not only gripping but unexpectedly uplifting as well. As it grapples with the seemingly senseless deaths of three beautiful girls, it certainly does not sidestep the major heartaches of life. But the author handles the emotional fallout with grace and deeply relatable pathos.
I flew through the pages of this quick-paced novel, anticipating with each concise chapter what new secrets the four narrative characters might in turn disclose. Cleverly plotted and peopled with finely drawn characters, Whalen reveals her keen insight into the hidden workings of the human heart.
If you enjoy women’s fiction, I recommend this one for your fall lineup. In When We Were Worthy, Marybeth Whalen proves herself to be a master of the craft, sculpting her latest novel into her finest work yet.
Thanks to Lake Union Publishing and She Reads for providing me this book free of charge. All opinions are mine.
After words: What other books do you recommend this fall?