What I had before I had you.
Publication Date: January 7,2014
Genre: Contemporary Thriller
In What I Had Before I Had You by Sarah Cornwell, a woman must face the truth about her past in this luminous, evocative literary novel of parents and children, guilt and forgiveness, memory and magical thinking, set in the faded, gritty world of the New Jersey Shore.
Olivia was only fifteen the summer she left her hometown of Ocean Vista. Two decades later, on a visit with her children, her nine-year-old son Daniel, recently diagnosed with bipolar disorder, disappears. Olivia's search for him sparks tender and painful memories of her past--of her fiercely loving and secretive mother, Myla, an erratic and beautiful psychic, and the discovery of heartbreaking secrets that shattered her world.
Beautifully written, captivating. I had a feeling that I was going love this book, moment I read the first sentence because afterwards I could not pull myself away. I felt like I needed to know what’s going to happen next. I loved fact that most of this book dealt with bipolar disorder because it something that a lot people can relate to. I have a friend who has bipolar disorder and I felt like I learned more about, from reading the book. What I Had Before I Had You was very descriptive novel but it fit with storyline well. I fell in love with the characters, the story. What I Had Before I Had You observed me into a story and it got hard to put down. It was hard to believe that it was Sarah Cornwell first novel, it was amazing. Cornwell is an author I am going look out for in future. There wasn’t anything I didn’t love about this book.
I loved reading about Olivia’s life and by end she felt real to me, it felt like I actually know her. It was interesting that one chapter was about her present life, and the next about when she was 15. The way that they did those memories worked well together. I enjoyed learning about her life, and was surprised how different she had become. She mentioned Kandy, but I did wonder what happened to Pam and Jake, if she ever reconnected with those. Kandy and Olivia seemed have long friendship, it came to surprise because of how angry Kandy got when she found out about Olivia and Jake when they were younger. I could tell that Bipolar disorder ran in family, way that her mom seemed to act half of time, not like a mother should. I felt bad for her, she seemed to have pretty troubled childhood. Then she got disorder and then her son. All through the novel I hoped that they would find Daniel, that he wasn’t somewhere out there, hurt. I felt as relieved as Olivia when she found him.
Descriptions, emotions in this book were amazing, everything that I have read, I found myself able to imagine. It was very vivid images, and it’s like I saw everything happening in front of my eyes, like a movie. I love novels like that. That’s what makes a great novel. I came across it by accident in library and decided check it out, glad that I did. I can’t wait to see what story Cornwell will come up with next. This book, author is worth checking out. It has everything from family, love, dealing with tragedies, secrets. You will find yourself observed in the book till the end.