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Every Time We Say Goodbye
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Every Time We Say Goodbye

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  113 ratings  ·  31 reviews
1942: Her mother's death left Grace Turner detached from the world until she became pregnant. Now, she's fallen in love with her baby boy but is locked in combat with her sister-in-law over his care. Wanting an independent life for herself and her son, Grace leaves Sault Ste. Marie to find work, and a place of her own, in southern Ontario. But she worries: when she returns ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published March 8th 2011 by Knopf Canada
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 347)
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Mike Robbins
This fine first novel from Jamie Zeppa is about families, and how their members mess each other around, and mess each other up. That isn't a new theme and it's hard to see how she could add anything new. Yet she has, through the warmth and understanding with which she has drawn her characters.

It's Zeppa's first novel, but not her first book. In the 1990s she taught in a remote location in the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan. I was in Bhutan at the same time, but we lived at opposite ends of the coun
...more
Amalia
Every Time We Say Goodbye arrived on my doorstep from goodsreads.com firstreads only a short week ago. I was so excited and started reading almost immediately. Well, I had to tend to the baby; take my son skating and guide him through his homeschooling day; and as the day wore on, drive carpools for the older kids; I had to make dinner, help with homework and get them all safely tucked into their beds - but then, I IMMEDIATELY started reading this book!

I was hooked almost from the get-go. For my
...more
Jenr
I won a free copy of this book from Goodreads!!


This book takes a look at the relationships between children and their parents or caregivers. It explores the attachments formed by children for the people who look after them and how easily or difficult
breaking those bonds can be.
The Author explores the role of a single unwed mother and the trials she faces when she chooses to keep her baby during a time when young single pregnant girls were whisked away to have their babies in secret, never to b
...more
Dianne Kaucharik
My views of this novel are mixed. I enjoyed the Canadian settings (Sault Ste. Marie, Peterborough, Toronto) and particularly the story of Grace, a young woman who endured hardship and heartache after becoming pregnant out of wedlock, at a time that this brought much shame. The novel addressed a multitude of family issues: birth, illness, death, infertility, infidelity, adoption, addictions, abandonment, cults, drugs, crime and secrecy. Imagine Maeve Binchy writing about a dysfunctional Canadian ...more
Shonna Froebel
This is a novel about the Turner family, based in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario. The novel is told in several voices.
We have Grace, who was disconnected from life after her mother died. Grace who had a baby without a husband. While her brother Frank and his wife Vera supported her and the baby, there was a struggle for control. Grace left to make a new life for herself, and worried that when she went back for the baby, Frank and Vera wouldn't let him go.
We have Dean, raised as Frank and Vera's son, f
...more
Sue
"Every Time We Say Goodbye" by Jamie Zeppa.

This book takes a look at the relationships between children and their parents or caregivers. It explores the attachments formed by children for the people who look after them.

The Author explores the role of a single unwed mother and the trials she faces when she chooses to keep her baby during a time when young single pregnant girls were whisked away to have their babies in secret, never to be spoken of again.

The book focuses on several generations an
...more
Vionna
The novel is an age-old story of a family in crisis with a rich family history, shifting dynamics and a gentle voice that allows the novel to waft, rather than plod, as it pieces together its characters’ disparate narratives. The dialog is quite sentimental, but her writing is redeemed by her characters. The female characters are very strong, especially the grandmother, Vera. At times, the events seems a trifle too good to be true, especially Grace entering business for herself after dream walk ...more
Em
Good writing, good read.
Carrie Marcotte
I would have given this a 3.5 out of 5 if I was given the option.

This was a First Reads book that I won through GoodReads. I wasn't sure if I would like this novel, but once I got into it I was really interested in the characters and the family history. The characters are flushed out well and the plot moves along quickly. You become really attached to their stories, especially Dawn and Grace. I also loved the undercurrent of fractured family and mental illness. This is a great first novel for t
...more
Mary
A poignant story of the quintessential dysfunctional family. The story jumps back and forth through time and is told (successfully!) from several different viewpoints in authentic voice. I was attached to the characters and intrigued by the storyline. As a parent, some parts of the story were uncomfortable, if not difficult, to read simply because I couldn't relate to that style of parenting (or lack there-of), but that was the point, I think. A fast read, and a moving and hopeful story.
Marlo
I received a copy of this book from Goodreads.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and couldn't put it down. It follows the characters through the generations and every section is told from the point of view of a different family member. Even though some family secrets were revealed early in the book, the author still managed to hook me right to the last page with unanswered questions. I would rate this five stars except for some mature situations and language that I can't recommend to everyone.
Lindsay
Phenomenal!
I won this book through FIRST READS on Goodreads, and it more than surpassed any expectations I had! The writing was completely engrossing. Every one of the characters were well thought out, with more depth than some people I know. Even when the characters behaved badly, I loved them for their faults.
I have already recommended this book to several people, and it hasn't even hit the shelves yet. About as predictable as real life, I found it to be a true page turner.
Colleen
Spans three generations of one particular family, starting in the 1940's when Grace becomes an unwed mother and her sister-in-law tries to keep the child. Successive generations all fall prey to parents coming and going, and all the missing links don't come together until the end. A bit of an unexpected twist at the end. Not your usual dismal Canadian lit. Not necessarily a great book, but I'm glad I read it.
Mohawkgrl
I really wanted to like this book but the narrative jumps from present to
past, and vice/verse with many different narratives. This turned me off completely and I just couldn't like any of the characters very much as they were so badly drawn. In conclusion, I just couldn't wait to reach the end. What a letdown.
Michelle MacAleese
A fast read that leaves a lasting impression. This novel about family relationships and how they get broken (and sometimes put back together again) felt like a light read and then somehow walloped me with huge emotional impact. Don't let Jamie Zeppa's simple style fool you--she will make you cry (in a good way).
Rachel
This is an example of interconnected stories that really work. It's about 3 generations of a family in Northern Ontario, but what made it so interesting is that the stories weren't in chronological order, so you'd meet someone through another person's eyes before learning about their life. Really good.
Hella Comat
Great first novel by Canadian writer Jamie Zeppa. Set in Sault Ste. Marie, it spans the time from the early 1940s to the 1980s - story of a rather dysfunctional family and how fear of social disapproval and lack of honest communication can destroy relationships. Tragic at times, but a great story.
Natashya KitchenPuppies
This is bound to become a Canadian classic, with pride of place between Ann-Marie MacDonald and Carol Shields and other awesome Canadian writers. I read the whole book in about 24 hours; an emotional roller coaster to be sure, I felt totally invested in every character and page.
Jen
Jan 28, 2012 Jen rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Canadians, historical fiction fans
Shelves: 2012, canadian
A triumph of characterization. Jamie Zeppa is somehow able to bring hope out of the depths of generational despair. I can see this being assigned in high school English classes across Canada, as it is just as important a work as anything by Margaret Atwood or Margaret Laurence.
Vicki
I loved this book. What a great read, I couldnt put it down. The stories were all weaved together but not in a way that was confusing. All the different personalities and characters that every family has encountered in one way or another. A great down to earth story.
Filipowichs
So far i'm loving this book! I just found out that it was written by a high school friend of mine...well acquaintance...and she lives in Toronto now and i'm trying to get a hold of her to meet. Her first book at age 46...i'm very impressed so far...50 pages in!
Maria
One of the loveliest books I've ever read. This author knows a lot about family and adoption and identity (Who am I?). Warning: It's one of those rare books that you actually cannot put down so give yourself a weekend of reading pleasure, and enjoy!
Jillian
I recieved this book from goodreads as a giveaway a few weeks ago. I enjoyed reading this book, I instantly got into it and enjoyed the realness of the characters. I loved how the book was from different characters points of view. I would recomend this book.
Richard
It reminded me of East of Eden and The Glass Castle; with the generational family drama and the dad that often falls short of his promises to his kids.
Victoria Shepherd
Beautifully written characters draw you in. However, the first story was so compelling I resented the intrusion of the subsequent generations.
Erica B
Well written characterization of three generations and the stories that entwine them.
Kim
Enjoyed the story but the different voices telling it all sounded the same to me.
Rueben
This book has interesting characters that would stick to you. I loved every bit of it.
Amanda
Jan 18, 2011 Amanda marked it as to-read
Shelves: first-reads
I won this book on First-Reads and am waiting to receive it.
Ame ^_^
interesting view on parenting and the effect of of it on children.
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ELEVEN READERS CL...: Rationale for Every time we say Goodbye 1 7 Mar 08, 2012 06:12PM  
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  • Lost on Brier Island
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  • Tell It to the Trees
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  • Landing Gear
  • Bedtime Story
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  • Crimes Against My Brother
  • Moving Forward Sideways Like a Crab
  • Switch
  • In the Land of Birdfishes
Beyond the Sky and the Earth: A Journey into Bhutan

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“It was not necessary to leave to learn that. But there were other reasons to go. If a person had a child but no husband, a room but no house, a place but no home, a will but no way, and if a person was losing her son and herself, little by little, day by day, because she knew what she knew in her skin and bones but not what her sister-in-law knew in her books and pamphlets, then yes, it was necessary.” 1 likes
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