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While I'm Falling Hardcover – August 4, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion; 1 edition (August 4, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401302726
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401302726
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,774,030 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Moriarty exposes the underbelly of family strife in this coming-of-age college drama set near Lawrence, Kans. One day, Veronica Von Holten is happy, med-school bound, in love with her boyfriend and not far from her supportive family. Then her father finds another man in the bed he shares with his wife of 26 years. As a messy divorce ensues, Veronica struggles to keep her own life in check while her mother's unravels, and a car accident, a house-sitting gig gone bad and an illicit kiss turn Veronica's personal life upside down. Things come to a head when her mother shows up on Veronica's dorm doorstep with the elderly family dog, Bowzer. Veronica is faced with the difficult task of navigating personal strife on top of her family's struggle to define itself anew. Moriarty (The Rest of Her Life) delves into this realistic but narrow world with an inviting honesty and creates a cast of vivid and flawed characters that will hold readers rapt with a queasy sense of unease. (Aug.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"WHILE I'M FALLING deftly captures the moment a child realizes that growing up means being responsible for your parents' mistakes - and preventing yourself from making the same ones. Laura Moriarty keeps getting better and better."—Jodi Picoult, author of Handle with Care --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

More About the Author

Laura Moriarty received her master's degree from the University of Kansas and was awarded the George Bennett Fellowship for Creative Writing at Phillips Exeter Academy. The author of The Center of Everything, The Rest of Her Life, and While I'm Falling, she lives in Lawrence, Kansas.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
5 star
22
4 star
41
3 star
14
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1
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See all 78 customer reviews
It was well written and the story was good.
Liz Smith
Veronica was a hard character for me to like, though, since for most of the book she seemed so bland and easily manipulated.
guitarchick24
I started this book one day, thinking that it would be just another read.
judi

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Nicki Heskin VINE VOICE on July 31, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Wow.

I got this book through Amazon Vine and thought the description sounded moderately interesting, but whomever wrote it really shortchanged this excellent novel. At it's core, this is a story about growing up. A young woman in college, growing into a committed relationship and into her life's passion. When her parents divorce her sophomore year in college, she has to stand on her own two feet financially, throw off the shackles of what her parents want for her life, say goodbye to her childhood home and neighborhood, and face a relationship no longer secure in the feeling that love and family is happily ever after.

Natalie, the mother, is a VERY believable archetypal "good" mother -- she gave up any career ambitions of her own (not unwillingly) to raise her two daughters, committed herself to marriage, family, home and suburban community and caring for her and her husband's aging mothers. But as her children age and leave home, and she finds that she and her husband share little on an adult level, she has to face the challenge of finding out who she is and what she wants. Without giving away the plot, I'll say she was thrust into facing the situation in a way she hadn't planned, and struggles mightily with the financial and emotional implications of the life she has left, with who she wants to become, and with her relationship with her daughters in the meantime.

The daughter must come to face with her mother becoming a whole person, and a sometimes flawed one, instead of just the mother she had always primarily been to her. She faces failures in her work, in her studies, in her relationships in her own mostly good judgment and character. And all this while her older sister succeeds and succeeds.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jeanne Anderson VINE VOICE on July 27, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I say this could make a great movie because as I read it I could see different characters almost vividly as to how they would play out on screen. I only gave it 4 stars instead of 5. The reason for that is that maybe there could have been a little more story for some of the other charcters in this book.

The book is about a family going through change. Mother, Father, two grown daughters, one in college, one married.
When the youngest daughter learns her parents are divorcing it really shakes her up, most of the book is written from her point of view, her life and struggles. The other point of view heard from is that of the mother yet not as much as the daughter.

What I found enjoyable about this story (and lets face it, it's a story told over and over) is that it gave a fresh and funny look at very real problems and possible scenerios and even solutions. It was by no means deep and profound but it worked and I like it. I loved these characters. It made me laugh and yes it even brought a tear to my eye.

It was well worth the read. I like this author very much.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Ladybug TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 23, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
What I liked most about this book was its completeness. Sometimes authors find the laziest possible way to define a problem and then solve it--especially in modern fiction--but Moriarty really took her time developing the story and the characters. She made me care about the people in the book. She gave their lives depth and meaning, so it was easy to relate to them. I was especially impressed that Moriarty was able to create a believable relationship between a mother and her two daughters. Each character was unique--and uniquely flawed. But because their flaws were revealed through complex issues and dilemmas within the story, I found myself empathizing with all three. There were a couple of questionable parts in the story when I couldn't quite believe that a certain character would respond the way she did, but, overall, I very much enjoyed reading this book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David N. Parker VINE VOICE on August 31, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
While I'm Falling is a story of a family falling apart due to a discretion by the mother, Natalie, primarily from the perspective of Veronica, her younger daughter. The father, Dan, is a very busy, successful attorney - and a domineering man who cannot tolerate what he perceives as weakness in any family member.
Veronica is in her junior year of premed study. An assistant dorm manager, she is trying to study for her organic chemistry exam when she runs into trouble with her boss and some of her dorm mates. Things escalate. Where she thought her only problem was studying enough for her organic chemistry exam, suddenly she is confronted with the possible loss of her job - and the free room and board that comes with it.
Next, her mother shows up at her dorm with Bowzer, the aging family dog. It seems the apartment she rented while her divorce was in process allowed no dogs - and she was thrown out. Without a place to live, and with almost no money until the divorce is settled, she asks to stay in the dorm with Veronica "for a while" until she gets her next paycheck from her part time job.
As one problem after another seems to pile itself on Veronica, her studying and her relationships suffer.
This story is really about those relationships. Ms. Moriarty has blended a variety of life-altering, very emotional situations into this single novel, where they seem to overwhelm both Veronica and her mother. It is well written, easy to read. There is no confusion of the multiple plot lines. Many of the emotional situations make you wonder if Ms. Moriarty has been looking over your shoulder.
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