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Twenty

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4.14  ·  Rating details ·  197 ratings  ·  121 reviews
At age fifty-five, Meg’s life is too filled with loss for her to remember what magic feels like. All she has left is a yard brimming with plants that are wilting in the scorching Iowa summer—and a bone-deep feeling that she’s through with living.

Meg has something else too: a bottle of mysterious pills, given to her years ago by an empathetic doctor. He promised that they
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Paperback, 240 pages
Published January 28th 2020 by Kensington Publishing Corp.
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Jamie I'm not sure if I'd recommend this for middle school. It deals with suicide and it could be triggering for some kids I think. It's a good book I'm…moreI'm not sure if I'd recommend this for middle school. It deals with suicide and it could be triggering for some kids I think. It's a good book I'm just not sure if it's appropriate for that age group.(less)

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Average rating 4.14  · 
Rating details
 ·  197 ratings  ·  121 reviews


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Patricia
TWENTY is a very interesting read. When a 55-year-old woman decides to take the pills a doctor gave her for her mother when her mother was at the end of her life, everything changes. The life the 55-year-old woman wanted to leave becomes the life she loves. I think this was an excellent book about death and the feelings death can bring. I believe this book will be a helping hand for many people.
Tammy
Feb 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Twenty is the story of a woman who is done with her life struggles. After taking pills that promise a peaceful death in exactly 20 days, life starts to look a bit different and she starts to appreciate the simple things. Twenty is an inspirational story of self reflection and finding the meaning of life.
Penny Danner
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, arc
I applied to review this book because the main character, Meg, aged 55, is close to my age and a majority of the books I read are younger main characters. I wanted to really connect with a character who felt she was tired of living, done with life, living in grief and depression, after having so many losses of loved ones throughout her life and just didn't see the point of going on day to day any more. When you take a hard look at your life like Meg did, you see the wonderful thing that it is. ...more
Sheena ☆ Oh, the Sheenanigans!

I have conflicting feelings about this read and to be honest, I've set aside some a box of tissues thinking water works were going to happen but I was left utterly disappointed. Meg's story just seemed rushed and I was left skimming the pages hoping to find something worthwhile but ultimately this became nothing more than your generic mediocre read. The only thing I could applaud in this novel was the ending. It was open ended and it best suited for this type of storyline, otherwise it's
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Rebecca
Aug 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Debra's writing is so lovely-lyrical, beautiful metaphors, and thoughtful. She does a great job inviting you into the scene, makes it easy to connect to the protagonist's world and her process. In addition, the book offers a look into the question, "what if?" and "what makes life worth living?" It reads easily and kept me engaged to the end.
Kris Verdeck
Aug 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful story about finding joy in life, even during a time of grief. Touching, reflective, and makes one consider what brings fulfillment. I've read many of Debra's non-fiction books and am grateful that she's brought her talents to fiction.
BookGypsy
Jan 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc-publishers
This novel moved me in so many ways. A deeply thought provoking novel about a woman who can't seem to find the joy in life anymore and would rather just end it all. I had to keep reading to know the end. A remarkable story.


Dawnny-BookGypsy
Novels N Latte
Hudson Valley NY
Dottie Legatos
Jan 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Twenty is a well written, easy to read story of a middle aged woman who's had enough of her lonely life. I jumped back and forth wondering if I should feel sad or joyful, just as the main character, Meg felt during her twenty days of reflection on her life. It's hard to talk about this book without giving too much away, but what I can say is that this is a wonderful reading experience, filled with both joy and sadness.
Many thanks to Kensington Publishing and Netgalley for an advanced copy in
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Nell
Nov 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I never review books but this one was amazing. My reaction after completion was a simple "WOW". Well written easy to read book that made me think about how I look at things. Will change anyone's perspective on life.
LAWonder10
Jan 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Some readers will be able to relate with the book 'Twenty', some will find it frustrating, and others may feel it is incredible.. bur all will be curious and captivated by it, throughout the story!
This is a very well-written book which keeps the reader guessing.
It will stir up several emotions. Even when it gets frustrating, curiosity will keep the reader reading.
This is a book many of us, who has experienced, loss, loneliness, and a feeling of void in one's life, will easily relate to. The way
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Margaret Yelton
Feb 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
This story touched my heart in so many ways, I found it to be a story of hope, grief and disillusionment and love. This book made you really stop and think what you might do in the same situation. Can something that has been done, been undone? Only time will tell. I found the premise of the story very different yet and enjoyable read. I personally believe anyone that reads the book can take something from the book. I received the book from the Publishing Company, and this is my honest review. ...more
Dianne
Jan 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Imagine if you take a substance that will end your life in twenty days. Twenty is a fictional story of Marguerite, a.k.a. Meg, who makes that decision and the subsequent physical and psychological ramifications of that choice. The story takes place in Iowa during the summer, and it is told from the first-person point of view over a period of twenty days. Debra Landwehr Engle makes excellent use of scene transitions when she switches between present experiences and background events that lead to ...more
Amanda Hash
Jan 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020
This was an unusual and remarkable book-- easy-to-read but full of depth, simple but lyrical, profoundly sad but also joyous. I could have easily read it in one sitting, but didn't want to know how it ended, so I put off reading the last few pages as long as I could.

I loved the first person narrative-- it was more like reading a memoir than a piece of fiction. I felt every emotion that Meg experienced, from the emptiness and defeat to the sheer joy at the beauty surrounding her. Her
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Caryn
Jan 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Twenty by Debra Landwehr Engle is one of the most unusual books I have read and nearly impossible to classify. It is fiction but what kind? It has the ear markings of chic lit with a bit of romance, it is in a way a sort of supplementary guide to mindful thinking and it could even be looked on as a retelling of A Christmas Carol set in summertime. Mostly it is a great story.

Meg is a 55 year old woman who has suffered great loss in her life. Her sister is married and lives with her family across
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Frosty61
Jan 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: giveaways
4.5 stars - Thank you to the publisher, author, and Goodreads for this ARC which I won in a Goodreads giveaway.

I really liked this quick read filled with emotion, some magical realism, and a bit of spiritual awakening. It's an easy read with a relatable main character and a realistic premise. It questions what makes life worth living?

The story is narrated by 55 year old Meg, whose grief and loneliness are the catalysts for her to decide to end her life. As she says in the first chapter, she's
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Lisa
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
I wanted to read this book from the moment it became available and I read the synopsis. Here’s why...Meg, the main character is 55 years old, has suffered tremendous loss and pain and has decided she has nothing left to live for. I identify with Meg. I’m 55 years old and have felt the same way. I thought by reading this book I would get some answers. And I did. Although a fictional character, Meg makes you think about what life is really all about and what you would miss if you were gone.

After
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Lynn
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If you're looking for a great book to read for book club, choose this book! It's a fast read with so many thoughtful ideas and topics to talk about with others. Written over a 20 day span, this is the story of finding life after giving up. One of the most important ideas of the story is realizing it's never to late to take charge of your life and do all the things you never feel you have time for, or will do later, or are afraid to do. Our tomorrow's aren't promised, so what are we doing to have ...more
Merry Chapman
Jan 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book is written like a 20 day diary as we follow the main character, Meg through 20 days of her life. Having gone through tragedy after tragedy and even with the death of her mother and trying to revitalize her gardens she fails to a drought ridden state and now she feels what's the use. She's had enough and doesn't want to go on this way. So having been given special pills meant to ease her dying mother's pain so she could go peacefully, she feels this is the way to go. She still had the ...more
Susan
Jan 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Marguerite is simply done. Her mother is dead. Her daughter is dead. Even her plants are dead. And in twenty days, she will be dead too. The story of the last 20 days of Marguerite's life is presented in a very plain straight forward manner. It is obvious that she is severely depressed and at first is very comfortable with her choice. But during the time that she has left, she is faced with the question of whether this was the right choice. Heavy in nostalgia, as most of the book was full of ...more
Shawna Briseno
Jan 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Simply beautiful. A reminder about what it means to live in the moment, to find the joy all around you each and every day.

When Meg loses her young daughter, and then her husband, and finally her mother, she begins to function on autopilot. Just going through the motions of life, not truly taking pleasure in anything. Eventually she decides that she’s done. So she decides to end her life, but in a most unusual way. She has twenty days to live. Twenty days to get her affairs in order, wrap things
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Ilean
Nov 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful, unusual story of a middle aged woman as Meg reflects on her life and reconciles her life. Meg takes some medication given to her for her mother who had passed away 5 years before by her mother’s doctor. This medication supposedly help one to slip into death easily in 20 days. She takes it not knowing if it is still viable.
Meg then decides to start to do a thorough cleansing of her home. She comes across pictures, letters, cards and items saved by her mother, herself and other
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Donna Hines
A backwards journey into the dark underworld of pain and misery.
Meg isn't feeling joy in living life and has found that perhaps it best to simply leave through suicidal ways.
A bottle of green pearls as it was is all that she has from her mother's memories and now may be all that she has period!
It's a story of the power of prayer and the delight of forgiveness.
Of empathy, compassion, and love in the strangest of places for which their can be no exit.
It's left open ended yet full of magical
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Bonnie
Dec 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Every once in a while a book falls into your hands that you are suppose to read and the right moment. Twenty was one of those books for me. The story gives hope when you can't see it. Meg might as well have been me. I can only hope that I do as well as she did. Ms Engle writes with a flare for reality. Never preachy, but full of lessons. Her writing is why readers read; to see themselves in the story and it find answers whether or not they knew the questions. I recommend this story for everyone ...more
Dawn Frazier
Feb 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
A well written book, I really enojoyed it even though parts of it were sad. I think everyone can relate to some parts of this book, the feelings of loneliness and grief, and the challenges of life at times. Meg learns to enjoy the small things in life, things that make her happy. I think it is a lesson for all of us. Thank you to Kensington Press for the opportunity to receive an ARC and to share in this wonderful book.
Marianne Fokas
Jan 16, 2020 rated it liked it
This novel fell a bit flat for me. We meet Meg when it’s around the 5th anniversary of her mother’s death. Her only child, Rose, had died many years before when she was only a child. Her husband, Joe, had left her after Rose had died. She misses her daughter and mom and has regrets concerning how she treated Joe. She feels there is nothing left to live for, her life is lacking and she isn’t happy. She takes these “pearls” which are meant to give her a peaceful death after twenty days. Within ...more
Mimi
Jan 28, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
What an interesting premise!

Meg's life isn't exactly going as she planned. It doesn't seem to be getting any better either. Her father died when she was very young. Her daughter, Rose, left her almost 16 years ago. Her mother, only recently, 5 years ago. Then there's Joe. Joe the love of her life. Joe who she could not stand to look at after losing Rose. Joe who was the last bearer of heart. Her ex-husband. She lost him too when the loss of Rose fractured their bind. Now, well now she has
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Laurice
Feb 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Such a great story. Very original and so touching. I loved it!
Rosie Amber
Jan 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: contemporary, fiction
Twenty is a contemporary story about a middle-aged woman who has reached a point where she wants to give up on life. Broken by the loss of close family members, loneliness and an unbearable Iowa heatwave which is killing off her beloved garden, Meg takes pills intended to ease the end of her (late) mother’s life. These untraceable pills are designed to turn off the control centres in the brain after twenty days, allowing the patient to drift away peacefully. That was what the doctor said five ...more
Sharon Naylor Toris
Jan 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thought-provoking and inspiring. The author brings us a well-crafted, unique plot, and keeps us connected to it even when the subject of being through with life tugs at the heart. We get nice realism in her steps, lovely memories of her mom, and a journey through gratitude for living.
Deborah Svec-carstens
Sep 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Debra Engle has written an engaging and thought-provoking novel about a woman’s journey with grief and how it leads her to rediscover the joy in life. Engle brings her non-fiction spiritual writing to this fictional story that will resonate with anyone who has experienced loss or a “desert” time in their life.
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I grew up loving books. Some of my earliest memories are of trips to the grand old library in downtown Des Moines, where we'd pull book after book off the shelves in the children's section and carry them home with great anticipation. I still remember the feel of those books, and the smell of the pages and bindings that had been loosened and wrinkled by so many readers who loved the books as much ...more
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