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You Are My Only by Beth Kephart
Published by Egmont USA
Pages: 256
Ages: Young Adult
Release Date: October 25, 2011
Publishers Summmary:

Emmy Rane is married at nineteen , a mother by twenty. Trapped in a life with a husband she no longer loves, Baby is her only joy. Then one sunny day in September, Emmy takes a few fateful steps away from her baby and returns to find her missing. All that is left behind is a yellow sock. Fourteen years later, Sophie, a homeschooled, reclusive teenage girl is forced to move frequently and abruptly from place to place, perpetually running from what her mother calls the “No Good.” One afternoon, Sophie breaks the rules, ventures out, and meets Joey and his two aunts. It is this loving family that opens Sophie’s eyes, giving her the courage to look into her past. What she discovers changes her world forever…

The riveting stories of Emmy and Sophie—alternating narratives of loss, imprisonment, and freedom regained—escalate with breathless suspense toward an unforgettable climax.

In the blink of an eye Emmy’s world goes from a place of enchanted bliss to one filled by fog and tears. Married to a man who saturates her with his unkindness her only hope is to find the one that has been taken from her, the one who filled her life with meaning. Baby. Nearly fourteen years later Sophie longs to run free of the confined space her mother puts her in for fear of the “No Good”. Little does Sophie know, but beyond her front door and through her attic window await a world that will change her life more than she could have ever imagined.

This isn’t my first experience reading Beth Kephart’s work and it certainly won’t be my last. With each book I read of hers I’m continually astounded at her ability to delve into the very depths of my soul within such a short span of time. Her writing expresses something greater than simply “knowing” people, Beth understands human nature and who we are at our cores better than any other writer I’ve read. What’s even more impressive is that within You Are My Only live characters that couldn’t possibly be more diverse without becoming unbelievable, yet she’s able to bring each of them to life in a way that has you breathing the air with them.

You Are My Only alternates viewpoints and time periods between Emmy, a mother who has recently had her child kidnapped, and Sophie, a teenage girl who is constantly on the run with her mother. Amazingly, I never felt a disconnect when switching between narratives and in many ways it helped to move the story forward. The age and life circumstance difference between Emmy & Sophie was also incredibly powerful to me personally. Sophie’s passion and desire for the outside world, for truth and understanding made her a character to cheer for. I felt so protective of Sophie in many ways, but I also felt torn by my feelings for her “mother”. I don’t want to delve too far into that because it would certainly spoil the story, but suffice it to say I had mixed feelings about her by the end of the book.

Though I loved absolutely everything about Sophie’s character, it was Emmy who kept tugging at my heart. This has quite a bit to do with the fact that I’m a mother as well, but it’s even more than that. Emmy’s constant drive to find Baby and then her subsequent care & concern for Autumn later in the book made her one of my favorite characters ever. Emmy’s compassion, despite her circumstances brought her to life and to this day have me wondering where she is in the world.

Within the pages of You Are My Only live characters that capture you within moments. Each of them from Emmy & Baby to Sophie & Joey to Miss Cloris & Miss Helen all become people you could imagine growing up with or at the very least, wishing you had grown up with. Beth Kephart is an author that knows the human heart and writes it with an eloquence that will have you in love with the words on the page as if they were living breathing beings. My only regret upon closing You Are My Only was that I had to leave behind Emmy and Sophie in their newly discovered freedoms, but thankfully I can still go back to visit them whenever I’d like. You Are My Only will easily be a favorite among readers, both young and old, and has quickly taken it’s place on my shelf among my personal favorite reads of all time.

The1stdaughter Recommends: Ages 13 and up. You Are My Only is a story about love, courage and the ability to break free. Readers of authors like Holly Cupala, Catherine Ryan Hyde, Courtney Summers and Gayle Forman will easily fall in love with Beth’s writing and her novels.

Pre-Order You Are My Only by Beth Kephart at the following spots:
Powell’s Books
Barnes & Noble

Read my reviews for two of Beth’s other marvelous novels here:
Dangerous Neighbors
The Heart is Not a Size

Thank you so much to the author for providing an early copy of this book for review! Connect with Beth on her Blog and on Facebook!
Purchasing products by clicking through the links in this post will provide us a modest commission through our various affiliate relationships.

15 Responses to Book Review: You Are My Only by Beth Kephart

  1. Beth Kephart says:

    oh my goodness
    what a tremendous gift this is.
    and it is a gift.
    and I will be forever grateful.

    from the bottom of my heart.

  2. Pam says:

    Fabulous book and great review!

  3. Poor Emmy. I feel for her already.

  4. Beth Kephart says:

    I am in tears. I just am.

  5. Elizabeth says:

    Great site….NEW FOLLOWER.

    Stop by my blog if you like….I have three giveaways going on.


  6. Carrie K. says:

    I am so excited for this book – and will be reading it soon! Your review is beautifully written. 🙂

  7. This sounds like a great read. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
    Also, I’m a new follower—wonderful blog! Stop by my blog and follow me too? 🙂

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