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Not My Daughter Hardcover – January 5, 2010

132 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews Review

Amazon Exclusive: Kristin Hannah Reviews Not My Daughter

Kristin Hannah is the New York Times bestselling author of 18 novels, including Firefly Lane, On Mystic Lake, Between Sisters, and True Colors. She is a former lawyer turned writer and is the mother of one son. She and her husband live in the Pacific Northwest and Hawaii. Read her exclusive Amazon guest review of Not My Daughter:

In this compelling, ripped-from-the-headline offering from bestselling author Barbara Delinsky, three high school seniors make a pregnancy pact. Heightening the stakes, these aren’t just any seniors--these are three popular, college-bound girls from good families. Set in an insular, tightly knit community in Maine, Not My Daughter explores the consequences of pact behavior on a small town, as well as the strain placed on mothers and daughters who find themselves in unfamiliar terrain. One of the pregnant teens is the daughter of the high school principal--a former teen mother herself--and the local school board is quick to assign blame. When the national media gets wind of the story, the principal’s job is put in jeopardy, as is her standing in the community. Not My Daughter is a timely exploration of teen motherhood and the hard choices that sometimes have to be made in life. Barbara Delinsky, long known as one of the premier authors of women's fiction, once again reveals the hidden strengths of ordinary women when faced with extraordinary adversity.--Kristin Hannah

(Photo © Deborah Feingold)

From Publishers Weekly

Delinsky proves once again why she's a perennial bestseller with this thought-provoking tale of three smart, popular teenage girls who make a pact to become pregnant and raise their babies together. Lily, Mary Kate, and Jess also happen to be the daughters of best friends Susan, Kate, and Sunny, and the mothers are thrown into a tailspin by this unexpected news. Susan, the principal of the town's high school, has the most to lose, when the schools superintendent and editor of the local newspaper question her abilities as a leader and mother, and other parents prove quick to blame her—a single mother herself who got pregnant as a teenager—as a poor role model. But all three women must come to grips with where they failed as mothers, how the dreams they had for their daughters are disappearing, and scathing smalltown judgment. Timely, fresh, and true-to-life, this novel explores multiple layers of motherhood and tackles tough questions. (Jan.)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday; 1 edition (January 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385524986
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385524988
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (132 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #712,510 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Barbara Delinsky, author of BLUEPRINTS (2015), SWEET SALT AIR (2013), ESCAPE (2011), NOT MY DAUGHTER (2010), WHILE MY SISTER SLEEPS (2009), THE SECRET BETWEEN US (2008), and FAMILY TREE (2007), has written more than twenty-two bestselling novels with over thirty million copies in print. She has been published in twenty languages worldwide. Barbara's fiction centers upon everyday families facing not-so-everyday challenges. She is particularly drawn to exploring themes of motherhood, marriage, sibling rivalry, and friendship in her novels.

A lifelong New Englander, Barbara earned a B.A. in Psychology at Tufts University and an M.A. in Sociology at Boston College. As a breast cancer survivor who lost her mother to the disease when she was only eight, Barbara compiled the non-fiction book Uplift: Secrets From the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer Survivors, a handbook of practical tips and upbeat anecdotes. She donates her proceeds from the sale of this book to her charitable foundation, which funds an ongoing research fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Barbara enjoys knitting, photography, and cats. She also loves to interact with her readers through her website at, on Facebook at, and on Twitter as @BarbaraDelinsky.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
NOT MY DAUGHTER is a riveting story that confronts a subculture of teenage girls and their pact to become pregnant. Barbara Delinsky's tale is set in Zaganack, a small coastal town in Maine that serves as a microcosm of the social, political, economic and cultural landscape of our times. A company town for an upscale retailer, Zaganack is an old township of family ties and deep communal relations, and its values are reflected in that understanding. But this town will be challenged by the age-old question: What makes someone a "good mother?"

Susan, Kate, Sunny and Pam have been friends for a long time. As part-time co-workers, they even created PC Wool, a subdivision of the local retailer specializing in dyed wools, designs and patterns. Just as the mothers are close to one another, so are their four daughters, Lily, Mary Kate, Jess and Abby. The girls are all intelligent, popular and outstanding high school seniors whose mothers are anticipating them going forward with their education when they graduate.

At a mother-daughter evening out, Lily announces to her mother that she is pregnant. Susan, who became a single parent as a teen, is confounded by the news. She also learns that Lily is not the only one expecting --- Mary Kate and Jess are as well. Susan informs Lily's father, Rick, who has always been part of their lives but upon hearing this news decides to become more involved. When it is discovered that there has been a pact between the girls to become pregnant, the characters of each of the mothers and their relationships with their daughters are brought into question. How could this have happened to their smart and wonderful children?

For Susan, the high school principal, Lily's pregnancy has unintended consequences.
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47 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Kayla on January 30, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I couldn't make it through. It sounds like it was written from the point of view of a 6th grader. Three best friends DECIDE they want to intentionally get pregnant and all three then announce it to their parents as if they just won the elementary school spelling bee and they're SHOCKED that their parents are unhappy. But the kicker is, the parents act like their daughters just lost an elementary school spelling bee and instead of treating it like what it is -- three extremely selfish, manipulative, shallow, and irresponsible girls taking it upon themselves to ruin their own lives, the lives of the men they so casually slept with, and the lives of the poor innocent children they're about to bore -- they end up bellyaching for page after page about what this all means and what ever will become of their reputations, their jobs, what people will think.

I'm sorry, but these parents should have been beyond LIVID at what these girls did. I'm never in favor of parents disowning their children, but come on! What parent in his or her right mind would be so cavalier about this? No screaming? No "who the hell raised you?" No "I didn't raise a young woman so selfish and self-involved as this"? None of that? It was more of a "well, what can I do now?" kind of attitude. I found it hard to swallow.

The dialogue was hard to get, frankly, but even more disappointing was the relationships. I expected a true mother/daughter story with strong emotions and scenes I could visualize in my mind. Instead, half the book was about the girls with their heads in the clouds and the other half was the mothers trying to cover it up with ridiculous dilemmas like "should I out the other girls or should I not?"

Anyway, I was disappointed in what I got.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Love to read on February 2, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased this book based on the many 4 & 5 stars rating and this was the first time that I have read anything from this author. To put it bluntly - this book was awful. The story is unrealistic, has a total pro-life approach ( which is fine but come on lets be realistic and not so in your face ) and was so sappy, predictable that I finished it only because I had purchased it for my kindle and gave it the benefit of the doubt that it MIGHT get better but - it didn't. It reminded me of a teen soap opera.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By E. Piccolotti on March 24, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've read a few Barbara Delinsky books and found them to be alright, but this one was a real struggle to finish. The plot is completely unrealistic and the characters spent so much time wringing their hands about these selfish girls' "situations" that I did not care at all what happened to them by the end. Even when Delinsky threw in the slight "twist" about something being wrong with Lily's baby, it still wasn't enough for me to sympathize with her after reading about all her selfish decisions and thought processes in the beginning of the book. The drama over whether or not Susan would keep her job was also over the top and silly. Delinsky barely skimmed over the legal reprucussions Susan could have if this sort of unlikely situation ever took place in real life.

I too, was bored by the ridiculously monotonous passages detailing the women dying their yarn. If the yarn was supposed to be some sort of metaphor for what they were going through in the novel I didn't get it. That is the only reason I could think of for Delinsky mentioning it ad naseum. Anyways, skip this book if you don't want to be bored, it comes off as a poor man's Jodi Picoult novel.
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