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Every Last One [Paperback]

Anna Quindlen
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
Price: 5.59 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

12 May 2011

The Lathams seem to have it all: health, wealth and a vibrant family life. As Mary Beth Latham contemplates a life built around home, friends and community, she has every reason to feel fulfilled and content.

Then, for one of her sons, a process of unravelling begins. Mary Beth starts to focus on him, only to find that the comfortable life she has spent years carefully constructing is shattered in a single moment. Forced to confront her own demons, Mary Beth realises how the inconsequential moments we all share - and one shameful act she has hidden from everybody - may have contributed to her fate.

Every Last One is a mesmerising and devastating portrait of family life, and a testament to the power of a mother's love and determination. It is Anna Quindlen's finest work to date.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Windmill Books (12 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099537966
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099537960
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 33,571 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Anna Quindlen is the author of the bestselling novels Blessings and Rise and Shine, amongst others, and of the non-fiction titles Living Out Loud, Thinking Out Loud and A Short Guide to a Happy Life. Her New York Times column 'Public and Private' won a Pulitzer Prize in 1992. She is currently a columnist for Newsweek and lives with her husband and children in New York.

Product Description


"Every Last One is a breathtaking novel. Quindlen writes superbly about families, grief and betrayal. I was completely mesmerised by this book and Mary Beth and the Latham family will stay with me for a long time to come" (Lisa Jewell)

"Every Last One, the eloquent sixth novel by former New York Times columnist Anna Quindlen, moves, in the turn of a page, from cosy, slow-burning American pastoral to the gripping stuff of nightmares" (Guardian)

"Engrossing . . . A spellbinding tale" (New York Times)

"Quindlen's sixth novel is as devastating in its emotional impact as it is devastatingly well-crafted... Writing with relentless and dazzling brilliance, Quindlen grapples with the lancing pain and the swirls of disorientation experienced by anyone who has loved and lost." (Daily Mail)

Book Description

The mesmerising and heart-rending new book from the #1 New York Times bestselling novelist

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Box of Tissues Needed... 21 Jun 2011
The Lathams are a fairly ordinary American family with their usual share of ups and downs. Our narrator, Mary Beth Latham, reflects on her life, her husband and three children. Mary Beth has her own landscape gardening business but her life is firmly focussed on her family, so much so that she is oblivious to the impending disaster which will shake this picture of tranquillity to the very core.

This was my first experience of Anna Quindlen's fiction and I will certainly be coming back for more. She has a very deft touch at capturing family dynamics, creating extremely believable characters who might not always be likeable but are most definitely realistic. From the very first pages I was drawn into the world of the Latham family, sharing their highs and lows, experiencing their happiness and emotional turmoil, especially the experiences of the teenage children.

The less folk know about the plot, the better but suffice to say that this is an extremely hard-hitting novel which affected me in a very visceral, emotional way, I don't think I have cried so long and hard in years! If you're at either extreme of the emotional spectrum, cynic or perhaps over-sensitive, then you're best to stay clear. I think fans of Jodi Picoult would appreciate this novel, it doesn't have Jodi's usual moral dilemna but it does echo her excellent depiction of family scenarios. Anna Quindlen's back catalogue will now be swiftly added to my "to be acquired" list - highly recommended.
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No spoilers 22 Sep 2010
By Julia Flyte TOP 50 REVIEWER
Mary Beth Latham is married with three teenage children. Her life is basically happy but it's not perfect. She loves her husband, but she also has days when she wonders if the relationship is lacking something. Her daughter Ruby has overcome an eating disorder and is a bright, challenging teenager who is rapidly outgrowing her first boyfriend. Twins Alex and Max are as different from one another as chalk and cheese. Alex is outgoing, sporty and seems to sail through life while Max is introverted and suffering from depression. Mary Beth works as a landscape gardener and has occasional issues with her mostly immigrant employees.

It is difficult to say more about the plot because it centres on something which happens about halfway through the book and I don't want to give anything away about what that is. It came as a shock to me and it should come as a shock to you if you read it. It neatly segments the book into "before" and "after", and causes the reader to reassess what they have previously read. Do be aware though that it involves an event which some may find upsetting to read.

This is the first book that I have read by Anna Quindlen. She has a lovely writing style which reminded me of Anne Tyler and Carol Shields. Mary Beth narrates the book and she felt like such a real person to me. Some of her passing observations on marriage or parenting were so spot on - thoughts I've had myself, but never articulated or had anyone else articulate to me. The book starts slowly and you wonder for a while where it's going, but it's so beautifully written that I was happy to just go with it and let it unfold in its own time.

I was taken aback by the plot development and enjoyed the second half of the book less than the first. However I finished this a couple of weeks ago but I'm still thinking about it from time to time, which to me is the sign of a good book.
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42 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written, moving story 15 Jun 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the second of the Richard and Judy Summer reads I've managed to get through, I always find that their list provides me with some fantastic new reading and this summer I haven't been disappointed.

From other reviewers I knew that this book was split into two parts; before some tragic event and after that tragic event. Coming into the book I had no idea what this event was and I have no intention of giving any further details that may give away spoilers (beware some of the Amazon reviews, they could completely spoil this novel for you). I don't remember how other people described this but I had the distinct impression that the event would involve one of the children, I found that this limited knowledge actually built up my anticipation and heightened the suspense, there were so many possible scenario's running through my head. Even though I knew that something was going to happen and I'd been building up to it, it was still a shock when it actually did and I was completely blown away.

Quindlen has a wonderful writing style, the novel pulls you through the minutiae of the Latham's family life, describing everyday happenings in such a way that they make you feel that you're a part of it. Some people have described the first half of this book as boring, I really don't think it is, it's not action packed but it is engrossing and I loved it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Yawn yawn 24 Oct 2011
Bought this book based on the good reviews. Was very disappointed. Starts with a slow, boring, dragged out description of family life. Was quite the opposite of gripping, was forcing myself to read on not really caring about or having any particular liking for any of the characters. The so called shocking event was in my opinion actually rather predictable. The book did however improve a bit after that (elevated from dull to mildly interesting but still very mediocre reading). Not the worst book i've ever read but certainly over hyped and i was left wondering what all the fuss was about.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars loved this book but so sad
this author reminded me of ann tyler one of my favourite writers .I really enjoying this book until it delivered the big shock i won't spoil it by telling you what ,from then on... Read more
Published 2 months ago by loopy loo
5.0 out of 5 stars wrong book revued
put my review for this book under the review for The Last Call ( Bill Travis Mysteries ) oops sorry
Published 4 months ago by jillywoo
2.0 out of 5 stars tedious and predictable
As with other reviewers I was "taken in" by the accolades.The author presents a rambling and predictable picture of the perfect family life. Read more
Published 6 months ago by benjake
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring, snoring
Did not enjoy anything about this book. The family life seemed phoney and the 'big event' contrived. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Maureen Costigan
5.0 out of 5 stars Unforgettable
I read this book about 3 years ago and I still sometimes think about it. It is one of the best books I have read because Anna Quindlen has this unique ability to really get to the... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Sophie Davis
3.0 out of 5 stars You have to wait.
It took me a long time to get into it. Almost half way through the book before the "plot" began
Published 7 months ago by Josephine Dolton,Colin Pearson
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read!
Like Jodi Picoult? try Anna Quindlen. A lovely thought provoking story from Anna. I will certainly give her others a go
Published 11 months ago by Patricia Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner
Another winner from this author. This book will keep your attention. Although i found it slow to start it became a real page turner. Well worth reading .
Published 12 months ago by bonnie
4.0 out of 5 stars Three little words
I thought I was going to hate this book by Anna Quindlen. In all honesty for the first half I was a little bit bored and then as I'm sitting in waterstones cafe with a pot of tea... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Sarah Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars Family...
This is not normally the type of story I'd go for.., but didn't regret it... A very talented writer... Couldn't put the book down...
Published 15 months ago by Keri S.
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