When I Ran Away by Ilona Bannister

#WhenIRanAway #NetGalley
.PDF, 247 pages
Expected Publication: March 30th 2021 by Doubleday Books

About the Book:
As the Twin Towers collapse, Gigi Stanislawski flees her office building and escapes lower Manhattan on the Staten Island Ferry. Among the crying, ash-covered, and shoeless passengers, Gigi, unbelievably, finds someone she recognizes--Harry Harrison, a British man and a regular at her favorite coffee shop. Gigi brings Harry to her parents' house, where they watch the television replay the planes crashing for hours, and she waits for the phone call that will never come: the call from Frankie, her younger brother. Ten years later, Gigi, now a single mother consumed with bills and unfulfilled ambitions, meets Harry, again by chance, and they fall deeply, headlong in love. But their move to London and their new baby--which Gigi hoped would finally release her from the past--leave her feeling isolated, raw, and alone with her grief. As Gigi comes face-to-face with the anguish of her brother's death and her rage at the unspoken pain of motherhood, she must somehow find the light amid all the darkness. Startlingly honest and shot through with unexpected humor, When I Ran Away is an unforgettable first novel about love--for our partners, our children, our mothers, and ourselves--pushed to its outer limits.

My Review:
This novel was a tough one to read in that it covers the gamut of nearly every human emotion. Such as joy, bewilderment, sadness, sorrow, and more emotions follow as we learn about Gigi and her dealing with new motherhood. I loved this fresh take on marriage and family and the touch discussion of postpartum depression and mental health in general.

The author did an excellent job in portraying each character, even the children. Human nature and its complexity was present throughout in the characters, especially Gigi. There is great sadness in feeling like you're alone with your feelings...and one thing is evident to me... we really don't know one another as well as we should in life. I will admit to getting emotional while reading this novel. How could one not? 

I am so glad I took a chance and requested this from NetGalley. I can't believe this is a debut, it had me turning the pages and I read it in one sitting. I was not disappointed in the novel of having it all (or not)...Most highly recommended.

Thank you NetGalley, Ilona Bannister and Doubleday Books for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an impartial review; all opinions are my own.

#WhenIRanAway #NetGalley


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