synopsis (from Goodreads)
For a mother, life comes down to a series of choices.
To hold on…
To let go..
Which road will you take?
For eighteen years, Jude Farraday has put her children’s needs above her own, and it shows—her twins, Mia and Zach—are bright and happy teenagers. When Lexi Baill moves into their small, close knit community, no one is more welcoming than Jude. Lexi, a former foster child with a dark past, quickly becomes Mia’s best friend. Then Zach falls in love with Lexi and the three become inseparable.
Jude does everything to keep her kids safe and on track for college. It has always been easy-- until senior year of high school. Suddenly she is at a loss. Nothing feels safe anymore; every time her kids leave the house, she worries about them.
On a hot summer’s night her worst fears come true. One decision will change the course of their lives. In the blink of an eye, the Farraday family will be torn apart and Lexi will lose everything. In the years that follow, each must face the consequences of that single night and find a way to forget…or the courage to forgive.
NIGHT ROAD is vivid, emotionally complex novel that raises profound questions about motherhood, identity, love, and forgiveness. It is a luminous, heartbreaking novel that captures both the exquisite pain of loss and the stunning power of hope. This is Kristin Hannah at her very best, telling an unforgettable story about the longing for family, the resilience of the human heart, and the courage it takes to forgive the people we love.
It's been a long time since I've read a book that made me teary, or a book I couldn't put down. The author does an amazing job of pulling the heartstrings of the reader. I think she takes the neurotic personality of
the mother, Jude, a bit too far. I wanted to slap Jude over the head a few times. Several of the other characters left a lot to be desired. Mia and Zach are twins. Zach is the leader of the two, with Mia trailing behind as the weaker of the two. Mia is portrayed as a somewhat childish teenager who is a social outcast. Her brother, on the other hand, is the handsome jock loved by all. The character of Lexi, now there was the star of this book. She's the daughter of a drug addict who spent time in jail. Lexi's mom dies and Lexi spends years in foster care. A relative is located and Lexi moves in with her (Aunt Eva). The three become inseparable, until one night when tragedy strikes. Lexi bears the brunt of a horrific accident. An accident that is the result of poor judgement from all three kids, Lexi, Zach and Mia. Zach shows nothing but weakness by allowing Lexi to take the blame. This single act ruined his character for me. No matter what happened after in the book, I saw him as weak. Yes, he did stand up and speak on Lexi's behalf, but he didn't fight for her. The tragic result of an unfortunate accident pulled a family apart. I found the end very unrealistic. This is not a bad book, it tugged at my heart. It made me cry. I just think it could have been so much better. The characters could have been so much stronger. I would have liked to see Zach and Miles stand up to Jude. The only advice I can offer, read the book yourself, and decide for yourself. No matter what you think of the book, it WILL make you feel raw emotion.
I originally gave this book three starts, but after thinking about it, I changed my rating to 4 stars based on the emotion I felt after reading.