Wednesday 14 July 2021

The Dilemma

Finished July 10
The Dilemma by B.A. Paris

This novel is around a mid-life couple, on the verge of a 40th birthday party for the wife Livia. Livia has been planning this party almost since her wedding day, when her parents not only reneged on their promise to give her a big wedding, but didn't even attend. She and husband Adam have had some rocky times, but have lasted and their marriage is stronger than ever. Adam didn't become a civil engineer as he planned, but he has an career he loves as an accomplished furniture maker. Livia eventually accomplished her career goals too. But their biggest pride is in their two children, Josh, whose existence forced the marriage, and Marnie. 
Marnie is studying in Hong Kong for the year, and her exams are scheduled later than originally thought, so Livia is at first disappointed that Marnie won't be able to attend, but then discovers something about her daughter that makes her less eager to see her back home. She is putting off telling Adam about it as she knows it will devastate him and the two are close. 
Adam has been contacted by Marnie who has arranged a short trip home between exams to attend the party as a surprise for Livia, getting a deal because of the indirect route she is taking. But then he hears terrible news that may affect her trip and is torn between letting Livia enjoy this party she has dreamed of for so long and telling her what he knows.
This is different than her previous books, in that these family secrets aren't the psychological suspense she done before, but more subtle than that.
Added to this is the rift between Livia and her parents that her early marriage started. She has reached out a few times over the years, but has not been able to reconnect with them. 
There are more issues, some that include the children, and some that came and went over the years. An interesting book that raises questions about the secrets we keep to protect others. 
But when there is 

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