I received a copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for my honest review.
Allison is a mommy, a wife, a blogger, a dutiful daughter, a helpful friend, and because life is stressful, she sometimes needs help to get through the day. Allison’s help of choice is prescription medication in the form of opiates (Vicodin, OxyCotin and more). Soon, those doctor-prescribed pills are purchased online, from China, with BitCoin-like funds.
When Allison starts to realize she may have a problem, that she may not be keeping it all together, those around Allison have already realized just how serious her problem may be. In order for her to keep her life, and her family, Allison must go to rehab.
But her prescription medicine and aversion to heavy drugs and alcohol puts her apart from the other ladies on her rehab track. And as Allison tries to figure out a way to get back home, she only turns more inward.
I look forward to Jennifer Weiner’s books as my official start to Summer. All Fall Down, While it started a little slower than I was anticipating (I also, purposely, did not read the back of the book or the synopsis), by page 50 I was hooked and spent the better part of Memorial Day reading the book in a manic reading session.
Allison is a modern everywoman. We’re career-minded. We want children and a family, and find ourselves doing all of it, but getting very little credit–Allison tells David multiple times that she is, essentially, all by herself. She moved to the house he picked (unseen by her, purchased on his whim) in the suburbs. His writing career falls by the wayside (through no fault of his own) and he is moved back to his old job at the newspaper. In order to pick up the financial slack, she starts blogging for a female-oriented blog. I was able to find a lot in common with Allison, however I am lucky that I do not have a David in my life.
For most of the book, David is absent and when he is in residence, he is aloof and just terrible. While I realize that marriages can suffer during the first few years of parenting, David is just plain selfish. While with their daughter, Eloise, David seems to be the perfect dad, with Allison he is standoffish and disrespectful. It wasn’t until the very end of the novel where I felt a little bit of sympathy for him. He actually became a multifaceted character by then.
Allison’s parents are also in need of Allison, and while her Dad is battling Alzheimer’s and her mother seems to be helpless, it falls to Allison to do the heavy lifting, make the big decisions and parent both of them.
I had a relative whom repeatedly went into facilities for her illness (Bipolar disorder), but part of her was also an addict. I anticipate while some of this is different than rehab, she probably would have been helped (and alive today) with a serious rehabilitation plan.
Jennifer Weiner’s writing, as evidenced in the many previous books authored by her I have read, is as masterful as always. Her story, while different than what I would have anticipated from her, is compelling and well-written. I would love to know the type of research she had done for this story, because she seriously did her homework. Just absolutely amazing, a novel perfect for the summer, whether you’re at home, at the beach or waiting in the carpool line.
All Fall Down by Jennifer Weiner is slated for release today, June 17th, 2014. The 400 page book, published by Atria books can be found at your favorite bookstore or library.
Have you read Jennifer Weiner previously? Is this book something you want to read? What are you planning to read this summer?