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3.90  ·  Rating details ·  709 ratings  ·  227 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
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 jus…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 3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  709 ratings  ·  227 reviews

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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.
Penny Danner
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, own
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. I ...more
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.
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.

Novels N Latte
Hudson Valley NY
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. ...more
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. ...more
May 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: debut-novel, kobo, fiction
This is an emotion filled debut novel that leaves you with plenty to contemplate.

Meg has given up on life and love and decides to take these pills given to her by her ailing mothers doctor five years previous... pills that have the power after twenty days to permit you to pass peacefully into the hereafter... but her mother died without having taken the pills and while Meg is not certain that it is the right thing to do she takes them anyway

The author carefully takes you through Meg’s thought pr
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 ret
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, otherw
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. ...more
Tisha (IG: Bluestocking629)

I have a love-hate relationship with this book. I don’t even know why I have this book. Was it one of you? Did you wax poetic about this book?

It was such an easy read, it was beautifully written, and it literally had me hooked. With that being said I am absolutely not a fan of the subject matter.

I felt the book started out a little bit Marie Kondo like. Then it smoothly transitioned to a little bit 🎵I can see clearly now the rain has gone🎵 with shades of Tim McGraw’s 🎵Live Like You You Were Dyin
Elisabeth Manley
Mar 06, 2020 rated it liked it
3.5*. I feel at peace finishing this book, much like Meg did. I simultaneously wish there was more to the ending, to know what happens, while also being okay with how it ended knowing it would have been happy either way. This book is all about trying to teach us to see the beauty in life while you’re still living it instead of waiting to your final days to realize it. Meg made me want to go out and buy big bright flowers for the house, and to spend every minute I can playing with daughter and ma ...more
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
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. Th ...more
Barbara Waloven
Mar 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A very inspirational story about life, grief, and love. It’s about how we can find happiness in the littlest of things when we think our days are numbered. In this story that number is 20. In the process of tying up loose ends Meg experiences a lightness of heart, learns to let go of her grief, and how to love again.
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 recollectio
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
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
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
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 j
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 p ...more
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 t
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
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 mem ...more
Linda Smith
May 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book has an interesting plot and one that leads the reader to question "What if"more than once. The main character, Meg, is middle-aged and has come to a bittersweet conclusion that life holds nothing but sorrow for her. She possesses pills that were given to her ailing mother years ago. The pills promise a peaceful death twenty days after taking them.
Here's my question for you: would you take them?
What happens if after taking them, you discover that maybe, just maybe, life isn't that bad
Pat Fayo
May 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Meg is sad and feels empty after the loss of her mother, her daughter and her marriage. She decides she doesn’t want to live anymore and takes little green pills given to her by her mother’s doctor when she was dying. These pills were to help her mother pass painlessly and comfortably on the 20th day of taking them. She never needed to give them to her mother so she decides to use them herself. Reading this book can raise questions as to what we would do. What would you do if you only had “Twent ...more
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 f
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 though
Pamela Faust
Jul 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What would you do if you only have twenty days left to live? Maybe you’re not dying, necessarily, but you’re so miserable that you can’t see living anymore. That’s what Meg is doing. Her dad died, her daughter died and her mom died. There just didn’t seem any reason to keep on going. She takes a drug that will make her dead in twenty days. During the twenty days she gets her house organized, visits some people that she wanted to and finds so many good things that there are still to see. Then she ...more
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
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