Books are food for my soul! Pull up a beach chair and stick your toes in the sand as the Jersey surf rolls in and out, now open your book and let your imagination take you away.

Friday, January 6, 2012

In Leah's Wake: Terri Giuliano Long

In Leah's Wake by Terri Giuliano Long
Published & Sold By: CreateSpace
Release Date: October 1, 2010
Pages: 368
ISBN: 1456310542
Genre: Contemporary Fiction / Women's Fiction / Chick Lit

About The Author:

Terri Giuliano Long is the best selling author of the novel In Leah's Wake. Her life outside of books is devoted to her family. In her free time, she enjoys walking, traveling, and listening to music. True to her Italian-American heritage, she's an enthusiastic cook. In an alternate reality, she might be an international food writer. She lives with her family on the East Coast and teaches at Boston College. In Leah's Wake is her debut novel.

BUY THE BOOK: In Leah's Wake

Disclaimer: At the request of the author, publisher and Pump Up Your Book! Virtual Book Publicity Tours, a Kindle edition of this book was sent, at no cost to me, for my honest review and participation in the virtual book tour event. 

Virtual Book Tour Event: On Friday, January 6, 2012, in association with Pump Up Your Book! Virtual Book Publicity Tours, Terri Giuliano Long participated in a virtual book tour event with an Author Guest Post on Jersey Girl Book Reviews. Book Description:

The Tyler family had the perfect life - until sixteen-year-old Leah decided she didn't want to be perfect anymore. Protecting their children comes naturally for Zoe and Will Tyler - until their daughter Leah decides to actively destroy her own future. 

Leah grew up in a privileged upper-middle class world. Her parents spared no expense for her happiness; she had all but secured an Ivy League scholarship and a future as a star athlete. Then she met Todd.

Leah's parents watch helplessly as their daughter falls into a world of drugs, sex, and wild parties. While Will attempts to control his daughter's every move to prevent her from falling deeper into this dangerous new life, Zoe prefers to give Leah slack in the hope that she may learn from her mistakes. Their divided approach drives their daughter out of their home and a wedge into their marriage.

Twelve- year-old Justine observes Leah's rebellion from the shadows of their fragmented family. She desperately seeks her big sister's approval and will do whatever it takes to obtain it. Meanwhile she is left to question whether her parents lover her and whether God even knows she exists.

What happens when love just isn't enough? Who will pay the consequences of Leah's vagrant lifestyle? Can this broken family survive the destruction left in Leah's wake?

This mesmerizing debut novel tells the tale of a contemporary American family caught in the throes of adolescent rebellion - a heartbreaking, funny, ultimately redemptive quest for love, independence, connection and grace.

My Book Review:

Zoe and Will Tyler have the perfect family life: a beautiful home, successful careers, and two talented straight-A student daughters ... who could ask for anything more? Their perfect family life comes crashing down when sixteen-year-old Leah, a standout star high school soccer player, who is being scouted by Ivy League colleges, meets twenty-year-old bad boy Todd. Todd introduces Leah to an alternative lifestyle, a walk on the wild side where sex, drugs and music is a potent mixture that she can't resist. What happens next is a traumatic and agonizing odyssey that the Tyler's must journey through in order to save their daughter from the downward spiral that her life has become. Trapped in the middle is their younger daughter, Justine, who at twelve-years-old, idolizes her sister and just wants her family back the way they used to be. Not only does she watch her sister rebel against her parents, but she also watches her parent's marriage disintegrate, as their fights over what to do to save Leah and their family escalate, and she wonders where does she fit in their family. In Leah's Wake is a powerful story about the complexities that come with marriage and parenting, and a family that must overcome dramatic obstacles to keep their family from shattering to pieces. 

In Leah's Wake is a beautifully written story that captivated me from the start. The powerful storyline is so realistic, this could be about any family. The complexities of the characters' personalities brought them to life, and provides a sense of reality that the reader could relate to. This haunting look at the complexities of marriage and parenting is intriguing, thought provoking and kept me riveted throughout the story. I loved how the author delved into each character, and gave the readers a very detailed description of their personalities, and what each of them were going through as the story progressed. This is a fascinating story of how a family's strong bond holds them together to overcome traumatic obstacles, and leads them back to redemption that only love can provide. I would recommend this book to all families with teenage children, the lessons learned from reading this book are invaluable and could shine a light on the choices and consequences that can happen within the family dynamic during the turbulent teenage years. Kudos to Ms. Long on her debut novel, I look forward to reading more of her books. 



  1. Dear Kathleen,

    Thank you very much for your gorgeous review! That the story held your interest and that you felt a connection means the world to me.

    Thank you again for hosting me!! It's such an honor to be here!

    Warmest wishes,


  2. Awww thank you Terri! I loved In Leah's Wake, and I am honored to have hosted your virtual book tour event on Jersey Girl Book Reviews. I look forward to reading more of your books. :)

  3. I love the review and the sound of this book! Added to my TBR! Thanks girls :)

    BK Walker

  4. Thanks BK for the very kind comment. This is definitely a book that you should read, it is very poignant story and beautifully written. :)

  5. Leah's Wake is a touching and somewhat depressing novel about a troubled teenage girl and how quickly the lives of all of her family members spin out of control following her own series of increasingly self-destructive choices. It is an engaging portrayal of how each family member's role has a profound impact on the others and when one part of the family system goes awry, the others follow suit. I was especially interested by and frustrated by the family's poor communication skills with each other--this isn't a criticism of the author, it was a realistic portrayal of how families can sink into very poor communication habits. The parents were realistically flawed in their attempts to rein in their troubled daughter, while at the same time overlooking their other daughter's needs (Justine--who is the "good girl"

    1. Thank you for stopping by and leaving your thoughts on the book. :)