What's Left Unsaid
A family determined to avoid the truth
Sasha is just about managing to hold her life together. She is raising her teenage son Zac, coping with an absent husband and caring for her ageing, temperamental and alcoholic mother, as well as holding down her own job. But when Zac begins to suspect that he has a secret sibling, Sasha realises that she must relive the events of a devastating night which she has done her best to forget for the past nineteen years.
Sasha’s mother, Annie, is old and finds it difficult to distinguish between past and present and between truth and lies. As Annie sinks deeper back into her past, she revisits the key events in her life which have shaped her emotionally. Through it all, she remains convinced that her dead husband Joe is watching and waiting for her. But there’s one thing she never told him, and as painful as it is for her to admit the truth, Annie is determined to go to Joe with a guilt-free conscience.
As the plot unfurls, traumas are revealed and lies uncovered, revealing long-buried secrets which are at the root of Annie and Sasha’s fractious relationship.
Deborah Stone lives in North London with her husband, two sons and fabulous golden retriever, George, who is the inspiration for Stanley in the novel. This is her debut novel.
What's Left Unsaid spans several decades, telling the history of the Stein family from the turn of the twentieth century to the present day. Speaking of her inspiration for her novel, Deborah says; ‘My own mother was evacuated at the age of five during World War Two and my father was a young man working as an ARP warden. This novel is purely fictitious, but I wanted to explore the traumas that many ordinary people of the war generation suffered, experiences which would be quite unimaginable to many of us today and then to contrast them with the issues we all face in the modern day.’
Some Reviews: 5 stars
'What a wonderful read, I loved it!
This is the story of families with deep secrets that finally come to light; the ripple effects are disastrous and almost bring Sasha, the main character, to the edge of insanity. Her love for her son Zac and the comfort of her beloved dog Sebastian are the only anchors in her life. Her mother Annie, starting on the slippery slope of dementia, is difficult to like, but when you finally get to her backstory, you feel empathy and want to cry for the little girl she once was.
The story is told by Sasha, her mother Annie and her father Joe and takes place from the war to the present time. It is sad, funny and eventually, once the truths have come to light and dealt with, a bittersweet and hopeful story. I didn't want it to end. Wonderful! Highly recommended. ' Hannah, goodreads
'I was captivated from the first page of ‘What’s Left Unsaid’. The author builds authentic, believable characters which I related to, and made me find this book very difficult to put down. It is a cleverly woven tale of intriguing family history, relationships and secrets - a great read and impressive first novel.' Suzanne. Amazon
'I just loved this book. It was both intriguing and thought provoking to see how the family relationships unfolded and I was really invested in reading about each one of the characters and following their individual stories. A must read for anyone who enjoys a beautifully written, well crafted read. I thoroughly recommend this book.' Lybury
' I seriously loved this book! Suspenseful, full of twists and turns, and just down right brilliant! Being told from the POV of three characters really was an interesting way to portray the novel, as opposed to just one main character. I believe the plot was very interesting and it kept my attention way more than I had initially thought it would. This was the first novel I have read by this author, but it will definitely will not be my last. Great storyline, will be recommending to my book lover friends.' Taylor
What's Left Unsaid
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Listen to Deborah talking about What's Left Unsaid HERE