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3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
The Bad Mother
Format: Kindle Edition|Change

TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 29 September 2013
Despite wanting to berate Tessa for being so self absorbed I did also feel sympathy for her. Is she a bad mother, or just a mother having to deal with too many situations at once, any one of which would be quite a lot to deal with if they had come alone. I found it a fairly well observed tale of how a life can turn upside down in a moment, when all that is certain in life proves to be false. When she is given the information which shakes the foundations of her world, Tessa isn't given the whole story, but only because her mother is the only person who knows exactly what happened, and after all these years, even she is unsure of what happened in the days of her innocence. In reaching out to find some solid ground on which to rebuild her life, Tessa makes a series of bad decisions. Again they are only bad decisions because being too naive and trusting she doesn't realise that yet again she may not know the whole truth. My frustration with her came when she was so busy trying to make new relationships that she doesn't see the mounting problems within her own immediate family; when she is struggling with the conflicts she sees around her own parentage and doesn't recognise the parental problems her own children are dealing with.

Although I generally like a nice neat ending, with all the strands tidied up, I do like the slightly looser ending here. I liked the way Tessa comes to the realisation that what she is hearing may not be the whole truth, and seeks further enlightenment, even though what she is told is not what she really wants to hear. We are left with the possibility of problems in the future but are not given a tidy assurance that those problems are not going to happen, it is more realistic to be wondering if the events Tessa unwittingly set in train are going to turn up on her doorstep or if everything can be safely locked away. The truth is that no-one knows and she, along with everyone else involved is just going to have to get on with life and hope for the best.

Tessa isn't necessarily a bad mother, she is a flawed human being, who sometimes doesn't think straight, or get things right - just like the rest of us.
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on 2 April 2017
The concept is intriguing - a separated mother of two discovers her parents adopted her. Her real mother is her aunt but what about her father?
Tessa's history looks simple on the surface, but when secrets tumble out of the dolls' house, she wonders who she really is.
Her connection with her birth parents distracts her from her own children and she becomes increasingly self-absorbed and open to manipulation. The story explores external influences on one's personality, and strikes a clearer note with Mitch, Tessa's son. His strand in the narrative felt fresh and appealing. Tessa, however, comes across as entirely self-interested and internal-looking, which becomes circular and frustrating. One of those rare occasions I actually yelled at an audiobook to get over itself.
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on 18 May 2015
I thought this book was dreadful - badly written, poor plot line, and full of cliches. I didn't feel any interest in any of the characters, except for the son, Mitch.

I bought this as I wanted something relatively light but also thought provoking and I thought from reviews thst this would meet the bill. It didn't, for the reasons mentioned above.

It's difficult for me to say what I hated most about it without spoiling the plot, but early on there is a scene in which Tessa gets two life-changing pieces of news within a few minutes of one another, and doesn't seeem too bothered at all. This was unbelievable, and then the book got worse from then on.
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on 18 November 2013
After taking a while for the story to hot up I was really enjoying this book, the plot and the characters were becoming quite substantial and going somewhere and then..... the book ended. I was left somewhat deflated and with lots of questions unanswered. I didn't feel the story was fully resolved and could have been taken quite a bit further. It was almost as if there was book planned but I dont think there was, it was more like the author got bored and just wanted the book to end. As a reader i just felt a bit cheated.
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on 30 October 2013
I gave this book three stars simply because I finished reading it - wanting to know what happened in the end. However, it was difficult for me to see things from Tessa's perspective. All through the story, I saw her as someone unbelievably and unbearably self centred. She didn't take into account anyone else's feelings, and she treated her own parents abominably, for which I could not forgive her. She was naïve beyond the pale! Her son was the most believable character in the book, with whom I could probably sympathise the most. He seemed to have the most common sense among them all.
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on 16 March 2014
It is not very often I score so low, I just didnt feel this book was going anywhere, it was sooooo slow going, it is written well, and started off fine, but I just found it boring after awhile, it certainly didnt keep my interest, I quit it after half way, I couldnt wait to start another book.
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on 4 March 2014
Really disappointed with this book, it jumps around constantly and whilst I rarely never not complete a book, I just haven't managed to complete this and have stopped 43% of the way through and decided to just cut my losses and watch paint dry instead - yes it really is that boring!
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on 28 December 2014
An interesting book which I enjoyed reading, though at times I became exasperated at the characters especially Tessa. Perhaps that's what the writer intended
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on 5 May 2014
its okay but not very impressive the characters were unrealistic and the plot a bit far fetched and left more questions unanswered than answered I felt as though she had reached the required word limit then just wrapped it up asap
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on 15 April 2017
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