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All We Know of Love Hardcover – August 26, 2008

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 7 Up—Natalie's mother left in mid-sentence. At least that is what Natalie remembers. Now four years, four months, and fifteen days later, the 16-year-old is traveling on a bus from Connecticut to Florida to ask her mother exactly what she had meant to say. The teen remembers that it was something about love, and, in her present predicament, she really needs to know. She is in a one-sided obsessive relationship with Adam, with whom she experiences her "ultimate passage into womanhood"; she has alienated her best friend; and her father thinks that she has gone skiing in Vermont. During the trip, Natalie encounters a variety of people with whom she briefly interacts, but who leave an impression on her. Their stories are inserted into the narrative as cameos, and she comes to understand that she can be loved for who she is—and not because she was a girl whose mother did not love her enough to stay. A moving coming-of-age story.—Sharon Morrison, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Durant, OK
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Four years ago, Natalie Gordon’s mother ran off, abandoning her child. Now a high-school sophomore, Natalie decides to follow in her footsteps and run away as well. She is running away from a toxic “love,” from a possible pregnancy, and, finally, to hopefully find her mother and discover the reason behind her disappearance. As she rolls along I-95 on a Greyhound bus, Natalie meets others who recount their own stories of love and loss, gradually preparing her for her mother’s saga of depression and poor choices, which leads her to acceptance of her own plight. This sad but ultimately satisfying journey is well written and interspersed with familiar quotations about love. The simple lesson that Natalie begins to learn from her seatmates and finally grasps from her mother—that she must love herself first, before anyone else can love her back—is a lesson for all readers to absorb and understand. It is, after all, “all we know of love. . . .” Grades 7-10. --Frances Bradburn
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 201 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick (August 26, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763636231
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763636234
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 0.8 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,017,262 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Fifteen-year-old Natalie Gordon lives with her dad not too far from New York City. Her mom has been gone for over four years. She walked out on Natalie and didn't even leave a forwarding address or phone number.

It takes a long time for them to adjust, as Natalie cries a lot and her dad drinks. But eventually they do manage to move on with their lives. Natalie relies on her best friend, Sarah, for laughter and support, and her dad learns how to make dinner and be home more often from work. Apart from Sarah, Natalie doesn't tell anyone else about her mom leaving. It's a part of her life that is too private and painful, and she doesn't feel comfortable sharing it with the world.

When Sarah and Natalie start high school, they meet Adam. He is a few years older, and Sarah isn't that impressed with him. But Natalie is. She is intoxicated with the attention he gives her and becomes desperate for any ounce of love he offhandedly throws her way. Every month she prays that she'll get her period, hoping she isn't pregnant, but she always goes back to him, even after breaking up with him a few times.

And then a package arrives. It's a gift from her mom. Natalie barely gives it a second glance, but does notice the return address. Without telling anyone, she buys a bus ticket to Florida and sets out on a painful journey to get some desperately needed answers. Along the way, she meets a handful of people who impact her life in different ways, with advice, directions, a kind smile, a loaned magazine and a sandwich. She also examines her unhealthy relationship with Adam. Natalie's journey, the people she meets, and the impressions and perceptions she gains will change her life forever.
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Format: Hardcover
I read All We Know of Love by Nora Raleigh Baskin was an excellent book. I would rate this book a 5/5. The main character's name is Natalie. She is 16 years old and is a very inspiring character. Natalie's mother walked out on her dad and her when we was 12 years old and she loses complete contact with her mother. Four years after her mother leaves her, she gets a package in the mail. She can tell by the mailing address that it is from her mother and she also notices it shows an address; an address in which her mother is probably located. When she opens it, she discovers that it is a box of earrings. Why would her mother send her these out of the blue? Does she want contact with Natalie again? Why would she? Natalie doesn't understand the feeling of love. She wants to discovers what it truly means and throughout the book, you get to feel the understanding as a reader. Should Natalie go off to seek her mother? Or should she leave her out of her life?

Taylor K. (Mr. Hunt's Class)
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Format: Hardcover
Natalie Gordon is on a mission. Her mother walked out in mid-sentence four years ago, never to be seen again, and now Natalie is on a journey to find her.

She wants to know everything: why she is the way that she is, what her mother was saying about love just before she walked out the door, and, most importantly, why her mother left.

While on a twenty-four hour bus ride to Florida, she may just find some of the answers in the people she meets along the way, people just like her, people caught up in the ideas of wanting, of longing, and of what love truly means.

ALL WE KNOW OF LOVE is a poignant study of the depths and shades of love, and what love means to each different person. The format of the book works well to convey this sense of the universal nature of love by placing its narrator at the center of many unfolding stories. Natalie is a pensive narrator whose musings move readers to consider their own inferiorities, and as her life touches those of characters around her, we are treated to brief glimpses into others' life experiences.

In ALL WE KNOW OF LOVE, Nora Raleigh Baskin gives the reader a study in the nuances of love, and leaves her audience with a greater perspective and appreciation for the commonalities within us all.

Reviewed by: Rebecca Wells
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Format: Hardcover
What a moving and beautifully written story; Nora Raliegh Baskin captures a
journey of deeply felt emotions with words that simply ring true and seem to flow
effortlessly while revealing the author's skill and her considerable gift.
I recommend this book for anyone looking for their way on the road to love.
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