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You and Me and Us: A Novel

by Alison Hammer

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Thank you to for providing me with a copy of this novel for review purposes.

I knew when I first read this synopsis that I would be crying, and this story did not disappoint!


Alexis Gold is a working mum. She never planned to have a family, but she loves her partner Tommy, and their daughter CeCe. Tommy takes the role of working part-time from home, while raising Cece, while Alexis starts up and runs her own successful advertising agency. 

However, everything changes when Tommy receives a terminal cancer diagnosis. His wish is to return to Destin - the beach where he grew up, met Alexis, and have visited every year with Cece. Their beach. 

As the realization hits Cece, the cracks begin to appear as her resentment to Alexis grows for not being their as she grew, and she comes to terms with growing up without her best friend and father. Alexis puts her career on hold, and puts her family first - packing up and making their way 'home' for one last summer.

Tomorrow is as much about for you as it is for your dad and me. It's about you and me and us. Our family.- Alexis Gold, You and Me and Us


Gah!!! Where to begin??

This would have been a brilliant story about a dysfunctional mother - daughter relationship all on its own, but in the face of a timer and loss of a loved one every emotion was elevated.

The strained relationship was so hard to read but I could feel both sides. You could feel the tension and you could feel the unspoken words.

And talking about things doesn't always solve them, which was a huge factor in this story between Alexis and CeCe.

Alongside the grief, CeCe is trying to find some normalcy, trying to dream about her future, navigate growing up, making friends, having dreams and boys. While she was frustrating at times she was a good kid and there was no lack of trying on her side either. Her perspective was interesting, it was a different love story to Alexis', with her relationship with Tommy.

I truly empathized with Alexis as well. She was struggling with a lifetime of reflection, and bitterness to her future and her loss. Her relationship with Tommy was beautiful and oh how I cried on the couch.

Grief is such a tricky thing. There is no wrong or right way to experience it, and there was a range of coping strategies between the characters that clashed, but that was real for me. Things do not fit perfectly in life. I think Hammer did a fantastic job of handling this theme, and even though tears were shed, it was hard to put down this book.

Here is what I have to say about cancer. My Pa passed away from lung cancer when I was a teen. He was my favourite person in the world. He did get treatment and it changed him. It changed his demeanor as well as his appearance. At some point, he refused to let us see him because he wanted us to remember him in a better way. 

I still struggle with this, but I am also grateful, because I don't remember him being at his worst, and our memories are precious. Every story with cancer is different, and I felt very connected to this one. 

Beautiful story looking at the good the bad and the ugly of family dynamics at the toughest of times. 

I highly recommend this read, and I strongly advise having tissues on hand.

(Triggering topics include death of a loved one, cancer patients and treatment. Although I will note that this is handled with as much grace as possible.)

I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on You and Me and Us. Have you read this? Tell me what you thought!
Feel free to comment below or on my 'bookstagram' at @ReadWithWine .
This review was originally posted on ReadWithWine ( )
  readwithwine | Jan 18, 2021 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I loved seeing the characters grow and change out of challenges. The beach/Florida setting was also perfect since we won't make it to the beach this summer. Thank you to LibraryThing Early Reviewers Program for the copy of this book! ( )
  clp412 | Jul 7, 2020 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
It took me a little white to get absorbed ---by the characters but after than I found the author's presentation of the different points over view over the subject of dying well presented and I really had to give her credit for working through several different issues. Yes, in nice novel fashion, the epilogue gives us an ending. Not sure what a sequel could do--Lexie isn't presented as someone who could ever try again. ( )
  nyiper | May 26, 2020 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Very good read about mother and daughter both struggling to be there for the other while still navigating anger and everyday life their father/husband slowly does from cancer. A very well thought out novel that shows how the worse can bring out the best and families closer to make them realize what really matters in life. I think the author did really good writing CeCe’s character and often I very much disliked the mother but her personality was needed to fit this story. Good book! Thank you LibraryThing for the free arc! ( )
  Chelz286 | Apr 29, 2020 |
Alexis does not have a good work/life balance, but she does not worry too much about her family because she knows her partner Tommy will be there for their daughter, CeCe. A terminal cancer diagnosis changes everything, unfortunately. Now, a few months of summer is what Alexis and CeCe have to not only savor their remaining time with Tommy, but also figure out how to move forward without him.

Alison Hammer’s debut novel is absolutely beautiful. Covering love, loss, and family, it is not an emotionally easy read, but it proves worth it. I enjoyed getting to know this broken family—and cried for them more than once. Their navigation of the challenges through something no one should have to face is not without hopeful and humorous moments, and by the end, I just felt glad to have experienced their story.

You and Me and Us is a book I definitely recommend.

I received a complimentary copy of this book and the opportunity to provide an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review, and all the opinions I have expressed are my own. ( )
  hes7 | Apr 24, 2020 |
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