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with ALL MY LOVE    by Patricia Scanlan order for
by Patricia Scanlan
Order:  USA  Can
Atria, 2013 (2013)
Hardcover, Softcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

with All My Love is an engaging story about, of course, love. with All My Love is also a compelling tale about the friction that can occur between families when a young man and woman announce to their parents that she is pregnant and they want to marry.

All sorts of obstacles are placed before the young couple. And an interfamily war starts between the groom-to-be's mother and the bride-to-be's father. So begins a war of attrition that is to last almost a lifetime.

Briony McAllister makes a trip with her daughter Katie from Dublin to coastal Spain to visit her mother Valerie who has just bought a house and retired there. By chance, Briony finds a letter written to her from her late father's mother. This letter describes how much her grandmother misses her she hasn't seen Briony since she was four! Briony had always been told her father's parents didn't love her and didn't want to see her. Hard stuff for a kid to grow up with.

Now the story goes back into the past and we, the readers, discover just what happened. Makes one wonder what our own handling of this tough situation might have been. The story is delicately told with much compassion and understanding of such a volatile time in the lives of those affected by possibly misguided decisions.

I have always had a bit of a love affair with Ireland so I very much enjoyed the Irish touches. I was also touched by the very close relationship between Valerie and her life-long best friend Lizzie. Don't miss this very endearing novel.

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