Before I Let You Goby Published 03 Apr 2018
|Before I Let You Go.pdf|
The 2:00 a.m. call is the first time Lexie Vidler has heard her sister’s voice in years. Annie is a drug addict, a thief, a liar—and in trouble, again. Lexie has always bailed Annie out, given her money, a place to sleep, sent her to every kind of rehab. But this time, she’s not just strung out—she’s pregnant and in premature labor. If she goes to the hospital, she’ll lose custody of her baby—maybe even go to prison. But the alternative is unthinkable.
As weeks unfold, Lexie finds herself caring for her fragile newborn niece while her carefully ordered life is collapsing around her. She’s in danger of losing her job, and her fiancé only has so much patience for Annie’s drama. In court-ordered rehab, Annie attempts to halt her downward spiral by confronting long-buried secrets from the sisters’ childhood, ghosts that Lexie doesn’t want to face. But will the journey heal Annie, or lead her down a darker path?
Both candid and compassionate, Before I Let You Go explores a hotly divisive topic and asks how far the ties of family love can be stretched before they finally break.
"Before I Let You Go" Reviews
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After falling in love with Kelly Rimmer’s previous novel “ A Mother’s Confession ”, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to read this upcoming novel.
Lexie Vidler is a doctor who is used to getting calls in the middle of the night on her cell phone. Although she hasn’t spoken to her sister, Annie in more than two years, Lexie isn’t surprised to hear Annie’s voice when her landline rings at 2:00am. She tries to prepare herself for the only thing contact with Annie has brought her over the years…
“Lexie, you have to help me – I think I’m dying.”
Instantly, Lexie can tell her sister is high, and angrily tells her to go to the hospital. Her fiancé, Sam is now awake and seems surprised at her tone. However, this isn’t the first middle of the night call she’s received from her little sister….
“I’ve been dealing with her addiction for years, and even after a two-year break from the drama, the weariness returns as soon as she does. If this was a one-off, I’d probably panic and rush to her aid – but it’s not. I have lost count of Annie’s desperate 2:00 a.m. phone calls.”
But Lexie is completely unprepared for what Annie says next….
“Lexie, I’m pregnant. I can’t go to the hospital. I just can’t”.
Lexie has always tried to be there for Annie. When they were young, their father died and their mother went to pieces. Emotionally they were on their own and so Lexie was the one who stepped up to take care of Annie. Lexie had always promised her father that she would take care of Annie. But when Annie pulled a stunt two years earlier that almost got Lexie fired, she knew she had to cut ties with her sister. But THIS is different. This time it’s not just Annie that needs her.
So much is riding on Annie getting clean. Lexie wants to advocate for her sister, but their complicated past has left her with mixed feelings. For Annie to get better and to heal, she will need to address the issues she’s tried to suppress by self-medicating. The secrets she kept from everyone….including Lexie.
Wow! Once again, Kelly Rimmer has written a book that I couldn’t put down. I was hooked from the start and became completely engrossed in the story and its characters. I could relate to the sister's complicated relationship. Because of my own experiences and relationships, some parts of the book hit me very hard. I was emotional and even angry at times. It made me question some of my own pre-conceived notions. And though I’ve finished the book…I can’t stop thinking about it.
This was definitely a thought-provoking read with some controversial issues that could help start some important discussions. The author has obviously done her research and I feel like the story was well-balanced, honest, realistic, and of course, interesting.
“ Before I Let You Go” is a well-written and poignant book about love, family, addiction, abuse, loss, and forgiveness. Another great read from Kelly Rimmer that I won’t soon forget.
Thank you to NetGalley and Graydon House for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.
5 stars! This was a touching and emotional novel that affected me deeply. I have not stopped thinking about these characters since I finished reading.
This is a story about addiction. It involves family secrets that test the strength of the bond of sisters. This novel will challenge you to examine your thoughts and feelings toward addiction and the effects it has on the addict as well as their families. My mind was swimming with my thoughts and reactions as the story progressed. I questioned myself constantly throughout the pages of this novel, asking how I would react and I really struggled to find my answers (some answers I still have not yet found).
There are many books about addiction. For me, the piece that truly pulled me into this story was that it was about drug addiction during pregnancy. This got right to my heart and kept me fully invested from first to the last sentence.
I will warn readers that there are upsetting scenes and discussions about the effects that substance abuse during pregnancy has on a newborn baby, but my suggestion is to push through these uncomfortable details (if you feel you can) because this story, as a whole, is deeply contemplative and insightful. It was a very eye-opening journey – one I will never forget experiencing. I would like to thank Kelly Rimmer for writing this deeply affecting story and opening up my mind to understand and show compassion to people who are often judged and ridiculed.
This was a Traveling Sister Read and it sparked very deep discussion and debate. To find this review, along with the other Traveling Sister reviews, please visit Norma and Brenda’s fabulous blog at:
A big thank you to NetGalley, HARLEQUIN – Graydon House Books and Kelly Rimmer for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!
Date of Publication: April 3, 2018.
4 Emotional Stars.
Lexie Vidler’s relationship with her sister Annie has always been complicated. Their childhood wasn’t like most families and Annie always relied on her sister as a mother figure. When Lexie gets a call at 2 a.m. after not hearing from heard sister for years, she knows something is wrong. Something bad. But then something is always wrong with Annie. Annie is a drug addict. Has been for years. This time however, it’s not just drugs that Annie has a problem with. Annie is strung out and extremely pregnant and Annie needs medical attention.
Where they live in Alabama, it’s a felony to use drugs while pregnant, thus if Annie gives birth in the hospital, she will lose custody of her baby and go to prison. Yet Annie calls her sister, - her sister - the doctor (whose boyfriend is also an M.D.). Lexie wants to help and she only knows one way to do so. Soon Lexie and her boyfriend Sam’s life is turned upside down, caring for Annie’s daughter Daisy, while Annie is in court ordered rehab.
Lexie and Annie’s relationship is complicated. Always has been. Their childhood, was unlike any other. Annie’s past haunts her. It is heartbreaking. She is raw, pained and struggling. At times, it seemed like she simply just survived. Lexie has always been the mother figure. She has always been the defensive one, unable to let anyone in, ashamed of her sister. Ashamed of her own life. Addiction, you see, is a family disease. You can’t hide from it, even when you want to, and that was prevalent here, as Lexie tried to do so for years.
“Before I Let You Go” by Kelly Rimmer - expertly delved into the subject of drug addiction and how it affected two sisters and their families, as well. Heart wrenching doesn’t begin to cover it. As I said, addiction is a family disease. It is not a label and everyone has a story. Lexie and Annie’s is a powerful one. The characters make you feel, they tear at your heart, make you anxious, make you angry and make you cry. “Before I Let You Go” is a novel that captures a lot of emotions and is one that I highly recommend.
I read this novel with several of my Traveling Sisters. Our reactions sparked incredible discussions. Thank you sisters. I’m so glad I read this one with all you. For Full Traveling Sister Group Reviews, please see Brenda and Norma’s Amazing Blog: https://twosisterslostinacoulee.com
Thank you to Edelweiss, Harper Collins and Kelly Rimmer for an ARC of this novel to read and review.
Published on Edelweiss, Goodreads and Twitter on 3.24.18.
Lexie gets a phone call at 2 am from her sister, Annie. She hasn't heard from her in years. She finds out that Annie is pregnant, but she won't go to the hospital, because she is afraid that she can't pass a drug test.
Annie is a drug addict. She has failed over and over again to get clean and sober. If she goes to the hospital, she knows that she will lose custody of her baby. She might even have to go to prison.
Lexie has always been there for her sister. They both share a strong bond of a terrible painful childhood. Lexie has her hands full.
She is a doctor and plans on getting married soon. They both live different lives. Lexie is in danger of losing her job.
Annie is in Rehab and writes her story through letters that are long buried secrets from the sister's childhood.
This was such a heartbreaking story. I just loved Annie. It had me in an emotional mess. The author shows that addiction affects every member of the family. The author did a great job telling both sides of the story, Annie, the addict, and Lexie the family member, who is affected by her sister's addiction.
Their childhood was such a terrible painful past. This book made me feel, I was in tears in certain parts of the story. This book covers so many emotional issues and difficult subject matter. I thought Lexie did everything she could do to help her sister.
This was a page turner for me. I just wanted to find out what happened next.
I loved the characters. I had empathy for Annie, Lexie and Sam.
Make sure you have tissues handy, while reading this book.
This was a Traveling Sister Read and it was a great discussion and I really enjoyed reading this with them.
I want to thank Edelweiss, Graydon House/ Harper Collins and Kelly Rimmer for the copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I really love this novel, and here are a couple reasons why: One, Rimmer is sympathetic to both addicts and the family members dealing with addicted love ones. Two, Rimmer is a hugely talented writer.
The story is about two sisters who have been estranged for two years because one of them has battled drug addiction for years. Lexie is the together sister—a doctor who is engaged to a wonderful man. Annie is the sister who has battled drug addiction. Lexie is used to getting late-night calls of requests for help from Annie. She’s put her in rehab, giving her a place to stay, tried to be understanding. She knows addiction is a disease, but it’s frustrating and heart-breaking nonetheless. But this late-night call is different—Annie tells her that she’s pregnant, and because she has still been getting high, she can’t go to the hospital or she risks losing the baby to social services.
Lexie and her fiancé Sam rush to help her. Annie is in premature labor and will die if she doesn’t get to the hospital. What follows is a harrowing tale of Annie trying to get clean and keep custody of her baby and Lexie doing her best to advocate on her behalf.
“We hold our pregnant woman on a pedestal in this society. We say we want the best thing for the babies, so we want to tell their mommas what to eat, what they can drink, what they drugs they can use . . . and there’s good intentions there, and maybe it’s the kind of thing that’s too nuanced to draw the line across but . . . for sure there’s a vein of misogyny here, too. Women who use drugs in pregnancy have fallen off the pedestal, and don’t we all just love to punish them for that.”
“In the last few years . . . politicians talking aout compassion with people with addiction, but . . . no one ever talks about compassion for women who are pregnant and have have addictions. Maybe we’re progressing to the point that we realize that raging addiction isn’t exactly a lifestyle choice, but we’re world’s away from applying that same logic to women who happen to be pregnant. We want our mommas to be perfect, and when they stumble and fall, we punish them.”
The recovery rates for people with substance abuse issues are abysmal. Rimmer deals with the subject with compassion and objectivity. This is a must-read for sure.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and Graydon House for the opportunity to review this novel.