Kathleen (Kat) Smith's Reviews > Escape

Escape by Barbara Delinsky
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Aug 26, 11

bookshelves: contemporary-fiction, romance-fiction
Read in August, 2011

Have you ever woken up in a cold sweat thinking you're stuck in a life you don't want? Did you ever consider disappearing - leaving family, friends, even a spouse - ditching everything you've ever known and starting over again? Maybe, just maybe, even returning to an old lover?

That's how Emily Aulenbach begins the story of her escape: escape from a workaholic husband she rarely sees, an overpriced New York City apartment that never feels like home, a job where profits, not people are the priority. She doesn't plan her escape; she just walks out of her cubicle, gets behind the wheel of her husband's BMW, shuts off her BlackBerry, and drives away.

The one thing she can't escape is her past. Lately she's been getting letters from Jude, the fiercely independent man she loved in college. She thought they were soul mates, until she caught him cheating on her. Now she finds herself heading north, toward the New Hampshire town where she and Jude fell in love a decade ago. She doesn't care if she's making another wrong turn. She just knows she needs a new destination.

My Review:

In the latest novel by Barbara Delinsky, Escape, is the story we all wish for at different times in our life. Those times where everything reaches a boiling point and we feel completely overwhelmed. Emily acts on those feelings when the law firm she works for has her working more for the benefit of companies instead of the victims in the latest lawsuit over the health effects of drinking water. Feeling more empathy for the victims, she simply gets up and walks away after a very powerful conversation with a woman whose baby is going to have health problems for the rest of its life.

She and her husband, James have been trying to have a baby for quite some time, and now their love life revolves around an ovulation clock instead of desire and need. When her and James studied law in school, their goals were to make a difference in the lives of people they would work for, but this isn't working for her. James is busy working to make partner this year and she never sees him anymore since he is working nights and weekends now.

So getting in her husbands BMW, she heads to Bell Valley, a place where she has found peace back in her early childhood, where her best friend Vicki, still lives with her husband Rob, running the Red Fox Inn. Emily hasn't maintained contact with Vicki because she's been striving for success but now feels an overwhelming pull to come back to Bell Valley, back to old friends, back to the woods that can once again heal what's broken in her heart and in her life.

I received this book compliments of Doubleday Publishers for my honest review and LOVED it. I spent the day reading it when my family gave me a day to myself. It had a healing effect on me as well because I got the opportunity to take a virtual vacation from my own life. I got to feel the calming presence of the walk in the deep, dark woods that Emily takes and sat by the bubbling brook listening to the sounds of the water. I can relate because I personally have felt that pressure of life come to the boiling point but this provides a safe outlet to see where a journey like that might lead. The conclusion of the story is beautiful! Rating this one a must read, I can easily say it earns a 5 out of 5 stars in my personal opinion.
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