"The highly anticipated follow-up to the critically-acclaimed bestseller THE DESCENDANTS ("Audaciously comic" -The New Yorker), a novel about a mother grieving her son's death in a Colorado resort town who is faced with another shock-the appearance of astrange girl carrying a secret that will change their lives irrevocably. "-- - (Baker & Taylor)
Overwhelmed by her son Cully's avalanche-related death, single mother Sarah St. John struggles through the well-meant advice of loved ones before a young woman appears on her doorstep, claiming that she is carrying Cully's child. - (Baker & Taylor)
Overwhelmed by her son Cully's avalanche-related death, single mother Sarah St. John struggles through the well-meant advice of loved ones before a young woman appears on her doorstep, claiming that she is carrying Cully's child. By the best-selling author of The Descendants. - (Baker & Taylor)
In this highly anticipated novel from the bestselling author of The Descendants, a grieving mother struggles to overcome her son’s death, when a strange girl enters her life with a secret that changes them both forever.
From New York Times bestselling author Kaui Hart Hemmings comes the highly anticipated follow-up to The Descendants.
IN THE IDYLLIC SKI TOWN of Breckenridge, Colorado, Sarah St. John is reeling. Three months ago, her twenty-two-year-old son, Cully, died in an avalanche. Though single, Sarah is hardly alone in her grief. Her father, a retiree, tries to distract her with gadgets from the QVC home shopping channel. Sarah’s best friend offers life advice by venting details of her own messy divorce. Even Cully’s father reemerges, stirring more emotions and confusion than Sarah needs. Still, Sarah feels she is facing the stages of grief—the anger, the sadness, the letting go—alone.
Barely ready to face the fact she will never again hear the swoosh of her son’s ski pants, or watch him skateboard past her window, Sarah is surprised when a strange girl arrives on her doorstep. Unexpected and unexplained, she bears a secret from Cully that could change all of their lives forever.
Kaui Hart Hemmings highlights the subtle poignancies of grief and relationships in this stunning look at people faced with impossible choices in the wake of a tragedy. With the unsentimental and refreshingly wry style famous for presenting trouble in paradise in The Descendants, Hemmings in The Possibilities considers the difficult questions of what we risk to keep our loved ones close. - (Simon and Schuster)
*Starred Review* Three months after her 21-year-old son, Cully, is killed in an avalanche, Sarah St. John decides to go back to work. But her job as cohost of Fresh Tracks, a program that is piped into the hotel rooms of Breckenridge, Colorado, now seems inane. Added to that, when Sarah and her best friend, Suzanne, clean out Cully's room, they find evidence that he was selling pot. More surprises about Cully come to light when a girl named Kit appears on Sarah's doorstep. Soon it is revealed that Cully and Kit had a relationship, and Sarah and her father, Lyle, with whom she shares her house, are drawn to Kit because she seems to make Cully more reachable. The whole of what Sarah calls her "tribe"—Sarah, Lyle, Suzanne, and Kit, along with Cully's dad, Billy, whom Sarah never married—go on a road trip to Colorado Springs to attend a memorial service for Cully, and the trip helps them find a way to move forward and achieve a measure of peace. As she did in The Descendants (2007), Hemmings deftly deploys her idyllic setting, leavens tragedy with humor, avoids sentimentality, and offers characters whom readers will find very appealing. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Anticipation will be running high for the second novel from Hemmings, whose debut, The Descendants, has been published in 20 other countries and was made into an Oscar Award–winning film directed by Alexander Payne and starring George Clooney. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.
Library Journal Reviews
Readers who loved Hemmings's The Descendants will be thrilled to see her back with another fiercely dry-eyed story of family complications. Devastated by the death of her son in an avalanche near their Colorado home, single mother Sarah St. John moves slowly through the stages of grief. Then a young woman comes calling, and she's carrying Cully's child.
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Library Journal Reviews
Because Hemmings's first novel, The Descendants, was adapted into a successful movie starring George Clooney, her follow-up is bound to be held up to that standard. There are many similarities: both novels center on dealing with grief and illustrate the author's love of place; sunny Hawaii in the former and Breckenridge, CO, in the latter. Both provide bright splashes of humor mixed with insight into messy family relationships. Narrator Sarah St. John is a single mom whose 22-year-old son, Cully, died in an avalanche while snowboarding. Sarah is struggling to come to terms with Cully's death, as is her father, Lyle, and Cully's father, Billy, whom Sarah never married. When Kit appears with her own reasons to mourn Cully, all the protagonists start thinking about the possibilities of what could have been and what could be. VERDICT The book has some rambling, stream-of-consciousness moments while Sarah tries to process all her emotions, and it lacks a deliciously snarky teenage character—but does offer a comic foil in Suzanne, Sarah's pot-smoking, plain-speaking best friend. Despite these slight flaws, this is a strong second showing for readers who enjoy modern characters, some laughs, and a good cry. [See Prepub Alert, 11/11/13.]—Christine Perkins, Whatcom County Lib. Syst., Bellingham, WA
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