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The Precious One

by Marisa de los Santos

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3475257,711 (3.93)10
A tale told in alternating voices traces the collaborative efforts of an estranged millionaire father and the daughter he abandoned 17 years earlier to reconcile and write his memoir.

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de los Santos is such a master at developing complex families with layers of connection and dysfunction, but who ultimately "win" through love. Like Anne Tyler but without the ambiguity. This is the story of Eustacia (Taisy) Cleary and her relationship (or lack there of) with her father Wilson, who is a first class jack-ass and abandoned the family when she and her twin brother Marcus were 17. He immediately re-married and had a daughter Willow who is his "do-over." A brilliant, but pompous man, Wilson and his artist wife Caro have raised Willow like a little robot of perfectionism, home-schooling her and exposing her to only the most wholesome things, which does not include his ex-family. When Wilson has a heart attack and is incapacitated, both Willow and Taisy's lives change dramatically. Willow at age 16 emters school, and Taisy, who ghost-writes for a living, is invited to write Wilson's biography. Taisy lives in the pool house and has a good vantage point to see the flaws in his new family. Willow struggles to make her way in modern teendom, and ends up getting involved with a teacher, though she is equally attracted to Luka, the only classmate to be friendly toward her. Taisy confronts her past, including a lost love, Ben and ultimately develops a relationship with Willow, saving her from a few scrapes made by her own bad judgment. Wilson never softens and remains the villain throughout, but even he is humanized while everyone else becomes part of the love fest. Sweet, feel-good story that is the perfect vacation read. ( )
  CarrieWuj | Oct 24, 2020 |
Beautiful story. Loved that it was told from the POV of each sister, Taysy, the abandoned daughter, and Willow, the precious one. Taisy is the older sister and it's remarkable how she's able to get through her hurt and anger with her father, and reach out to the younger sister, who without Taisy would probably not have surivived. Willow has all the worldly things anyone would want but not the warmth and love of family. This is the one thing their father cannot give either one. Together they form an unbreakable bond. ( )
  merilosa | Sep 7, 2020 |
3.5 stars ( )
  amandanan | Jun 6, 2020 |
This is the kind of book that makes me wish I could stay curled up all day, just reading, reading and reading some more. I became sad as the pages I had left to read became fewer. I've had similar experiences reading the author's other books.) And though I've read many ARCs on my iPad, this was the first book that I actually purchased as an e-book (which I am personally against on principle because I love REAL books so much) because I just couldn't wait to read it and the library wait would've been too, too long.

Long, detailed reviews are really not my forte, but I will tell you that this book made me stop and hold it to my chest several times, because the descriptions were so pleasing to me. The kind of sentences that make you just wish YOU could've been the one to put those feelings to words. And,....I adored the characters. Read it! ( )
  LMJenkins | Nov 28, 2018 |
Not my favorite Marisa de los Santos, and still a darned good read! ( )
  SallyCrosiar | Nov 14, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 53 (next | show all)
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For Susan Davis, ideal reader and treasured friend, with love
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If I hadn't been alone in the house; if it hadn't been early morning, with that specific kind of fuzzy, early morning quiet and a sky the color of moonstones and raspberry jam outside my kitchen window; if I had gotten further than two sips into my bowl-sized mug of coffee; if he himself hadn't called but had sent the message via one of his usual minions; if his voice had been his voice and not a dried-up flimsy paring off the big golden apple of his baritone; if he hadn't said "please," if it had been a different hour in a different day entirely, maybe—just maybe— I would have turned him down.
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A tale told in alternating voices traces the collaborative efforts of an estranged millionaire father and the daughter he abandoned 17 years earlier to reconcile and write his memoir.

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