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Diary - Large Print Edition by Eileen Goudge

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Elizabeth Marshall's grown daughters had no idea their mother's old diary would turn the image of their parent's happy marriage upside down. For upon the opening pages, they learn that the love of their mother's life was not their father! And the desperate-to-know answers to their questions reside with Elizabeth who, after a massive stroke, lies mute and near death in a nursing home. Will pages of her diary provide the truth they seek?

Reviews (7)
Inspired by her parents' own true story, the author writes about real love, and finding the strength to choose when there is a choice that includes love, passion, and safe, secure options.
Two sisters, Sarah and Emily, are dealing with cleaning out their mother's house, which has been sold. Their mom is near death in a nursing home, following a stroke. In the attic, in a box of their mother's keepsakes, the girls find an old diary, and of course they open it -- to find themselves reading entries made in 1951, the year she married their father. The diary captures their attention at once -- as it grabbed mine -- and sharing a bottle of wine, they keep reading.
They see a whole new side of their mother and father in the love triangle of their youth.
The book is a short novel, a quick read, well written, and moves along holding the reader's interest. No time is spent in long descriptions ... the girls keep reading as they care more and more for the outcome of the story. The diary creates a secret mystery about their mother and a side of her they never knew. Clues are there, and the love story has suspense all its own.
[Quotes] "All these years, I never thought of them as being anything other than our parents. But they had lives of their own apart from us. They were passionate. They took risks. How could we not have known that about them?" ... "Maybe that's why Mom kept the diary. She knew we'd come across it one day." ....
I enjoyed this very much. Don't we all wish we had a diary to learn more about our parents and the stories they never shared!
5 stars, and especially recommended for any with an interest in the mysteries in your own family history.
This is the story of two sisters who come across their mother's diary in her attic while packing up her possessions to empty the house for the new owners. Their mother had a massive stroke and is not expected to live. Their curiosity leads them to read the diary, and they are surprised to discover that their mother Elizabeth was caught up in a love triangle before she married their father Bob after a chance meeting with AJ, a childhood classmate who ignites a spark of passion within her that was missing with Bob. The story takes place in 1951 in a small Nebraska town, in a time when girls were expected to remain chaste until their marriage. Elizabeth must decide whether to settle down with her sweet, kind, well respected boyfriend who could offer her a comfortable life, or follow her heart. As the daughters finish reading the diary, they have many unanswered questions about their parents. Will they discover the truth? Make sure you have tissues handy.
It's an interesting story; but lacks depth. It has a naive quality that would be appropriate for young adults; but doesn't work so well for people who have spent more years on the planet.
I read this book because my Bookbub had a recommendation from Debbie Macomber. I gave it two stars for the superior quality of the writing. However, I'm sorry to say that it was, for me, a snooze fest. So boring and predictable I could hardly wait for it to be over. I admire the author both for her work and for her personal life. I would encourage the reader not to hold this one against her. Sorry Ms. Grudge.
I have loved all Eileen Goudge books and this is another one to read. The sisters found their mom's diary while cleaning out the attic because their mom was dying and their died already. To their surprise, the diary was all about a guy named AJ that their mom loved and lusted after, but then she married Bob Marshall instead. Wait until you read the end of book............
THE DIARY by Eileen Goudge was sent to with a personal inscription that made me aware that this was a very special story for Eileen to write. Then I focused on the "Author's Note" which immediately touched my heart as I saw it was dedicated to Eileen's parents and I knew I was in for something very special. Reading Eileen Goudge's books are always a pleasure but I was not prepared for just how extraordinary THE DIARY is. I read it in one sitting which is unusual for me with my busy schedule but there was no way I was putting it down.

I was caught up immediately with Emily and Sarah's discovery of their mother's diary which tells the story of A. J. and Elizabeth. The two adult sisters are clearing out their mother's attic following her declining health as a result of a debilitating stroke that has left her mute and close to death. The diary is delicately described as "bound in maroon leather dulled with age, its gilt tooling worn away in spots" with a "satin bookmarker, once red, now faded to the ashy-pink of dried, pressed rose." It also said the diary "seemed to carry the scent of dried roses" and with that description I was transported with all my senses to the setting of the story within that diary!

The diary reveals a completely different mother than the one the daughters thought they knew. With their father having predeceased their mother, and her unable to speak, they have nobody to turn to with their questions concerning the information that is divulged in the writing in this journal. Diary entries are written verbatim and the story simultaneously presents the narrative to accompany each entry.

Sarah and Emily are as entranced as they are shocked to discover that according to the diary their mother's true love was not their father--the father they adored, the couple they thought they knew so well all their lives. The more the girls read, the more they realize they had a mystery they must solve.

Was there really another man, this "A. J." in their mother's life before their father who was the one they were always led to believe was her one and only true love? Who was the mysterious A. J. who the diary describes as someone who made their mother a young woman of passions unknown to her daughters? If this A. J. was Elizabeth's first true love, what made her leave him for their father?

This is a story that will make you ask yourself how well you know your own parents. Think of yourself now as an adult, and how well do you think your own children know about your romantic past with the man in your life, your spouse? That was a question that really made me think about my own son and what does he really know about his parents and the love they have shared for 36 years?

This is a gem of a book. One to share with everyone you care about. It would make a wonderful Mother's Day gift or Easter present for that special parent or person in your life. I know it is a book that I will long cherish and reread as it is written to enjoy over and over again. Eileen Goudge has shared some very personal background with her readers and by opening her heart has created a book to cherish now and for generations to come.
Submitted Originally to BOOKIN' WITH BINGO by Karen Haney, April, 2009

ISBN: 1607516861

Rating: 4.5/5

Votes: 757

Other Formats: docx lit txt mbr

ISBN13: 978-1607516866

Publisher: Vanguard Press/Doubleday; Large Print edition (2009)

Subcategory: Contemporary

Diary - Large Print Edition
Author: Eileen Goudge
Title: Diary - Large Print Edition