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Everything She Forgot: A Novel by Lisa…
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Everything She Forgot: A Novel

by Lisa Ballantyne

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Fair, predictable story line. 7yo is abducted from school by her biological father, a bumbling but charming man, who panics and takes the child on a road trip. When they are found, he drives off in the van that bursts into flames and plunges into the sea. The story goes back and forth between 7yo Moll and now grown Margaret, who has forgotten that time. ( )
  nancynova | Oct 1, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
"Everything she forgot" by Lisa Ballantyne was a pretty good read. I figured out the "twist" pretty quickly, but it didn't hamper my reading of the book. We'll formed and defined characters. A good read for a rainy day. ( )
  maryintexas39 | Sep 22, 2016 |
[Everything She Forgot] by Lisa Ballantyne
2.5's

From The Book:
Some things aren't meant to be remembered . . .

They're calling it the worst pileup in London history. Margaret Holloway is driving home, but her mind is elsewhere—on a troubled student, her daughter's acting class, the next day's meeting—when she's rear-ended and trapped in the wreckage. Just as she begins to panic, a disfigured stranger pulls her from the car seconds before it's engulfed in flames. Then he simply disappears. Though she escapes with minor injuries, Margaret feels that something's wrong. She's having trouble concentrating. Her emotions are running wild. More than that, flashbacks to the crash are also dredging up lost associations from her childhood, fragments of events that had been wiped from her memory. Whatever happened, she didn't merely forget—she chose to forget. And somehow, Margaret knows deep down that it has something to do with the man who saved her life.

As Margaret uncovers a mystery with chilling implications for her family and her very identity, [Everything She Forgot] winds through a riveting dual narrative and asks the question: How far would you go to hide the truth—from yourself?

My Thoughts:
A first book for this author so I didn't expect it to be outstanding...but I did have a reasonable expectation for it to be more closely related to the what the description described. It started out with the accident and the stranger saving Margaret's life. It was a good exciting start...then it switched to a mob type man...George McLaughlin's story of his lost love and the seven year old daughter that he hasn't seen since her birth. When it returns to Margaret she seems to just be drifting through life and spending every moment she can with the man who saved her life and is now in a coma. Back and forth it goes between 1985 and 2013. Both stories by themselves would have made an excellent book but together...they are just two stories with no merging. ( )
  Carol420 | Aug 5, 2016 |
Everything She Forgot by Lisa Ballantyne is a highly recommended character study of love and redemption set in two time periods.

In 2013 Margaret Holloway is driving home on icy, snowy roads when she finds herself in a huge multi-car pile-up. Margaret is stuck in her car and unable to get out. When she smells gas and realizes her car is on fire, Margaret is sure she is going to die. Then, out of nowhere, a man comes and tries to help her escape. He hurts his hand when breaking her window, but manages to get her out of the car. Then he seemingly disappears in the melee surrounding the huge accident.

After the accident, Margaret finds herself unable to concentrate. She is having flashbacks to the crash and strangely remembering things from her childhood that she thought she had forgotten, or repressed. She also finds herself drawn to find and sit in the hospital at the bedside of the man who saved her. She learns his name is Maxwell Brown and that he's had no other visitors.

Alternating chapters are set in 1982. Big George McLaughlin was born into a family of gangsters but he just wants to get back together with his first girlfriend and help raise his daughter, Molly, away from his family. When he meets Molly, now age 7, on her way to school, he ends up unwittingly abducting her. We also learn of George's childhood. While the two are on the run and bonding, a strange reporter named Angus Campbell is trying to figure out who abducted Molly and make a name for himself.

The present day story is told through Margaret's point of view, while the story set in 1985 is told through multiple points of view, although mainly through George and Angus.

I was looking forward to reading Everything She Forgot after reading The Guilty One and I wasn't disappointed. Although it is being described as a mystery, it is really more of a character study. While there is a mystery, much of it will be easily discerned early on by most readers. There are several surprises, though, that you won't figure out beforehand. What will compel you to keep reading is the quality of the writing, the answers to a few nagging questions, and the emotional connection you will feel for Margaret and George.

Disclosure: My Kindle edition was courtesy of HarperCollins for review purposes. ( )
  SheTreadsSoftly | Mar 21, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
An excellent book that I read straight through after picking it up to place on my to read pile! The author, Lisa Ballantyne does an excellent job of moving back and forth between the past and present. Margaret Holloway is caught in the worst pile-up in London history. She's trapped in her car until a disfigured man pulls her from the car seconds before it catches fire. Then, he's gone.

Though Margaret knows she has been traumatized by the accident, she is also remembering things from her childhood that had been wiped from her memory. Highly recommended. In fact, I have already ordered her first book, The Guilty One and can't wait to read that as well. ( )
  Dianekeenoy | Jan 6, 2016 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0062391488, Paperback)

Driving home, Margaret Holloway is rear-ended and trapped in the wreckage of her car. Just as she begins to panic, a stranger pulls her free and disappears. Though she escapes with minor injuries, Margaret feels that something's wrong. Flashbacks to the crash are dredging up lost associations from her childhood. And somehow, Margaret knows that it's got something to do with the man who saved her life. As Margaret uncovers a mystery with chilling implications for her family and her very identity, Everything She Forgot winds through a riveting dual narrative and asks the question: How far would you go to hide the truth-from yourself?

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 06 Jul 2015 18:10:07 -0400)

"They're calling it the worst pile-up in London history. Driving home, Margaret Holloway has her mind elsewhere-on a troubled student, her daughter's acting class, the next day's meeting-when she's rear-ended and trapped in the wreckage. Just as she begins to panic, a disfigured stranger pulls her from the car just seconds before it's engulfed in flames. Then he simply disappears. Though she escapes with minor injuries, Margaret feels that something's wrong. She's having trouble concentrating. Her emotions are running wild. More than that, flashbacks to the crash are also dredging up lost associations from her childhood, fragments of events that were wiped from her memory. Whatever happened, she didn't merely forget-she chose to forget. And somehow, Margaret knows deep down that it's got something to do with the man who saved her life. As Margaret uncovers a mystery with chilling implications for her family and her very identity, EVERYTHING SHE FORGOT winds through a riveting dual narrative and asks the question: How far would you go to hide the truth-from yourself...?"--… (more)

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