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Never Coming Back (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

We all have secrets. It's in the telling of our secrets that we become more aware of who we are. This brilliantly told story of Clara and her mother Tamar has us frustrated with the hidden past that Clara is trying to uncover. Why did Tamar send Clara away? The answer is eventually revealed, and we realize to what extent a mother will go for the love of her child. A Kleenex, or two, will be necessary to have on hand while reading this wonderful novel by Alison McGhee. — Julie (RBB Staff)

— From Never Coming Back


When Clara Winter left her rural Adirondacks town for college, she never looked back. Her mother, Tamar, a loving but fiercely independent woman who raised Clara on her own, all but pushed her out the door, and so Clara built a new life for herself, far from her roots and the world she had always known.

Now more than a decade has passed, and Clara, a successful writer, has been summoned home. Tamar has become increasingly forgetful, and can no longer live on her own. But just as her mother's memory is declining, Clara's questions are building. Why was Tamar so insistent that Clara leave, all those years ago? Just what secrets was she hiding?

The surprising answers Clara uncovers are rooted in her mother's love for her, and the sacrifices Tamar made to protect her. And in being released from her past--though now surrounded by friends from it--Clara can finally look forward to the future. Never Coming Back is a brilliant and piercing story of a young woman finding her way in life, determined to know her mother--and by extension herself--before it's too late.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781328767561
ISBN-10: 1328767566
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Publication Date: October 10th, 2017
Pages: 256
Language: English