Only One Life by Ashley Farley

Release Date - April 2019

Just yesterday morning, I'd given up on this book. I had marked it as unable to finish. The book I chose instead of it wasn't grabbing me, so I went back and gave it one more try. Why I was never able to finish it in the past is truly beyond me. It turned out to be an emotional read.

Julia Martin was kicked from her family's manor when she announced she was getting married, pregnant, and dropping out of college. Expecting her parents' support, she received a very cold dismissal. Fifteen years have passed. She's just had her first child after years of miscarriages. Her husband died tragically in an accident hours before their son was born.

It's been a struggle, but her husband's death has made it impossible for Julia to survive. The bank is foreclosing on her home and she has no choice but to go home. There, she's surprised by her mom's warm welcome, but her father and sister treat her just as horridly as they did in the past.

As secrets are revealed, it becomes clear that this is Julia and her mother's turn to reexamine their choices. It's time for them to decide what to make of their future.

I know why I kept stopping this book. Julia's dad and sister are jerks and I couldn't imagine putting up with their behavior. The story goes back in time to look at how Iris met her husband and why she's put up with him for so many years. From that moment, the story seamlessly switches back and forth between Iris's past and present and Julia's present. I was hooked and hoped that all would be okay between these two as they learned to embrace the future and lean on each other.

Am I totally happy with every moment of the book? No, but that's okay. I never did like Julia's dad or her sister. I did love the growing bond between mother and daughter that made this book so touching. It ended up being a winner.


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