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Every Wild Heart: A Novel Paperback – March 14, 2017
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“Donohue’s latest is women’s fiction at its finest, a masterfully unfeigned story about unconditional love and its healing power mixed with a thrilling mystery. Her animated dialogue sets the tone, and the human and equine costars add genuineness... [A] fast-paced, bestseller-bound page-turner.” (RT Book Reviews (top pick))
“Every Wild Heart... [is] a heartfelt, funny, poignant and suspenseful story of a good woman trying her best, making mistakes, picking up the pieces and moving on -- a celebration of what it means to be a working mother.” (Susan Wiggs, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Family Tree)
“Brava, Meg Donohue! Part love story, part mystery, I devoured this novel. Everything I love about women’s fiction is tucked within these pages-strong and vivid characters, an intriguing plot, a beautiful love story with a dash of mystery…and bonus, horses!” (Lori Nelson Spielman, internationally bestselling author of The Life List)
“Every Wild Heart captivated me from the very first page. . . . Meg Donohue’s latest demonstrates, yet again, her gift for revealing the many mysteries of the human heart.” (Camille Pagán, bestselling author of Life and Other Near-Death Experiences)
“By turns sweet, funny, and tension-filled, Meg Donohue’s wonderful new novel shows us the power of wild hearts - and the remarkable females who possess them.” (Sarah Pekkanen, internationally bestselling author of The Perfect )
“Every Wild Heart is Meg Donohue’s finest novel to date -- emotionally resonant, absorbing and funny in all the right places, it’s a portrait of mothers and daughters, missteps and triumphs, and love in all of its bewildering and delightful disguises.” (Meg Mitchell Moore, author of The Admissions)
Praise for ALL THE SUMMER GIRLS: “Beach Book Extraordinaire! Donohue’s three protagonists are irresistibly sympathetic as they try to unbury their true selves from the ruinous secrets of their shared past.” (Elin Hilderbrand)
“All the Summer Girls is a beautifully wrought story about the tender yet resillient bonds of friendship and the damage of kept secrets. Meg Donohue writes with keen insight, prodding readers to re-examine their own past choices, while gracefully examining themes of family, friendship and forgiveness.” (Karen White, New York Times bestselling author)
“An honest and engaging look at the complicated and powerful bonds of female friendship. Donohue takes us on a weekend reunion full of secrets, resentment, and regret-in other words, once you start this book, you won’t be able to put it down!” (Jennifer Close, bestselling author of Girls in White Dresses)
“A fast-paced novel about the enduring friendship of three young women who spent their summers in Avalon on the Jersey shore before dispersing across the country....A good beach read.” (Kirkus Reviews)
Praise for HOW TO EAT A CUPCAKE: “Beautifully written and quietly wise, Meg Donohue’s How to Eat a Cupcake is an achingly honest portrayal of the many layers of friendship—a story so vividly told, you can (almost) taste the buttercream.” (Sarah Jio, author of The Violets of March and The Bungalow)
“Deliciously engaging. Donohue writes with charm and grace. What could be better than friendship and cupcakes?” (Rebecca Rasmussen, author of The Bird Sisters)
Praise for DOG CRAZY: “Wonderful! Anyone who has ever loved and lost a dog will find wisdom and comfort in this sweet, smart story.” (Allie Larkin, author of Stay)
“Even if my daughter hadn’t recently rescued a dog, our first, I would have fallen in love with Meg Donohue’s Dog Crazy. On these pages you will find love, healing, forgiveness and pure unbridled joy of the human and canine kind.” (Adriana Trigiani, New York Times bestselling author of The Shoemaker's Wife)
“[A] delightful tale with heart-wrenching emotions … entertaining high jinks and a well-deserved happy ending for the many vivid characters you’ll grow to love. Add to that Donohue’s zippy prose, and you’ve got an entertaining, can’t-put-down page-turner you’ll want to share.” (RT Book Reviews (top pick) on DOG CRAZY)
“Donohue expertly explores the relationship of mother and daughter, realistically illustrating both the good and the bad in it... A beautiful combination of mystery, hope, and most of all self-acceptance , Every Wild Heart is sure to shine in all women’s fiction collections and be a huge hit among book clubs.” (Library Journal (starred review))
From the Back Cover
From USA Today bestselling author Meg Donohue comes a mystery, a love story, and a mother‑daughter tale about two women on a precarious journey to uncover their true selves
Passionate and funny, radio personality Gail Gideon is a true original. Nine years ago when Gail’s husband announced that he wanted a divorce, her ensuing on-air rant propelled her local radio show into the national spotlight. Now, The Gail Gideon Show is beloved by millions of single women who tune in for her advice on the power of self-reinvention. But fame comes at a price, and escalating threats from a troubled fan make Gail worry for the safety of her daughter, Nic.
Fourteen-year-old Nic has always felt that she pales in comparison to her vibrant, outgoing mother. Plagued by a fear of social situations, she is most comfortable at the stable where she spends her afternoons. But when a riding accident lands Nic in the hospital, she awakens from her coma changed. Suddenly, she has no fear at all and her disconcerting behavior lands her in one risky situation after another. And no one, least of all her mother, can guess what she will do next. . . .
Top customer reviews
I couldn't put it down. When I got to the end, I thought, "OH!" and smiled with approval.
Fourteen-year-old Nic has always felt that she pales in comparison to her vibrant, outgoing mother. Plagued by a fear of social situations, she is most comfortable at the stable where she spends her afternoons. But when a riding accident lands Nic in the hospital, she awakens from her coma changed. Suddenly, she has no fear at all and her disconcerting behavior lands her in one risky situation after another. And no one, least of all her mother, can guess what she will do next…
My Thoughts: I love a good mother/daughter tale, and a single mother raising a teenager resonates with me.
Gail is one of those characters I enjoy: feisty, opinionated, protective, talented, and smart. She is famous for all of those qualities on her radio show, and although she works at night and her daughter is at school in the daytime, they still manage to keep in touch.
But Nic’s form of social anxiety worries her mother…and then when she has the horse riding accident, everything changes. It is as if a part of Nic, a wild side, has been awakened. Part of that awakening came in the form of a boy named Lucas Holt, a senior boy drawn to her, just as she was to him.
Every Wild Heart: A Novel kept me engaged all the way through, and I enjoyed the alternating narratives of Gail and Nic. Seeing each perspective kept me rooting for each of them.
I wanted Gail to succeed, and a great offer for her to do a TV show was very tempting for her, but with all that Nic was going through, she was struggling with the decision. What would ultimately bring out the best in each of them without the other being sidelined? How would they find a way to work through the fearsome times? How would a sudden stalker threatening Gail and Nic bring the story to a crashing conclusion?
I was stunned by the stalker reveal…and then the pieces fell into place for Gail and Nic moving forward. 4 stars.
Meg Donhue's protagonist in Every Wild Heart, Gail Gideon known as G.G. to her many listeners, hosts a nightly radio talk show (Donohue says that Delilah was an inspiration). G.G. gained national prominence when a YouTube video of her on-air rant the day that her husband asked for a divorce went viral.
G.G. used to play music, but once people heard her rant, she became one of the most popular talk radio hosts in the country. Each night people call in to her show and she doles out advice, basically telling them if she could get over her divorce, they can make it too.
G.G. has a 14-year-old daughter, Nicole, whom she loves more than life itself. She is on good terms with her ex-husband Tyler, now happily remarried with two boys, although she still has feelings for him.
Nicole has a stutter, and that makes her reticient to speak in class. Everyday after school she goes to the stable where her horse is kept. She rides, helps clean out the stables, and is well-liked by Denny, the stable owner.
Nicole has one good friend, and no boyfriends. She is a good kid, with a strong sense of fairness. She can't abide the bullying that goes on at her private school, and wishes she could do something about it.
One day Nicole takes a terrible fall from her horse, and is knocked unconscious. After the fall, her personality changes. She becomes more daring, willing to take risks she never would have thought of trying before. This worries G.G. a great deal.
Also worrying G.G. is the fact that it appears she has a stalker, one who wishes to do her harm. G.G. goes into Mama Bear mode to protect Nicole from the stalker and her own reckless behavior.
Donohue has a way with a phrase, like these:
"I would have taken the opportunity to remind him that he adored the beast in me right up until the moment he decided he didn't."
"The strange thing about crazy people, I'd noticed in the years since my rant about Tyler had gone viral and I'd become a household name, was that they all shared a similar vocabulary, as though love could be found in a million variations, but hate was just hate, any way you slice it."
Every Wild Heart has packed a lot inside- the depth of parental love, teenagers who want freedom to make decisions but don't yet fully understand the consequences of those decisions, chasing your dreams, women trusting themselves, and opening yourself up to love.
The characters are fully drawn, and I particularly liked that the ex-husband isn't 'the bad guy', he loves his daughter and cares about his ex-wife. The story is told in the alternating voices of G.G. and Nicole, making this a great book for mothers and teenager daughters to read together.
If you are a fan of Delilah After Dark, like to ride horses, or enjoy rock'n'roll music (there's a playlist at the end of the book), you'll get an extra level of enjoyment out of Every Wild Heart.