It’s Halloween night, and Emily is getting ready to take her son, Dante, out trick-or-treating. But while he’s still napping, Emily gets the trick: her husband, Tyler, rings the doorbell instead of just walking in, and when Emily opens the door, he’s standing there with the woman he’s leaving her for this very evening, that bitch Amy Ballantyne.
Although Emily knew things weren’t perfect with Tyler, she had no clue he was leaving and is determined to conceal that fact from her old-fashioned Italian family, especially her cold and judgmental mother. The only people she tells are her closest friends, Michelle and Grace-Ann, although word spreads quickly.
However, not long after her mother tells her what a failure and disappointment she is — “It seems to me that this whole mess you find yourself in right now is just par for the course, Emily” — her father’s fractured ankle turns into a life-or-death saga, and her crazy new life is overwhelmed by family drama. When they emerge on the other side, her parents have changed so substantially that Emily and her sister Clara could have never imagined such a metamorphosis.
And throughout all this, even as she steps out on a few tentative dates, she doesn’t pay attention to the someone behind the scenes, always quietly present in her hour of need.
Elizabeth Allison has crafted a superb story of surviving betrayal to demonstrate how even the most dire circumstances can lead to a sunny new beginning.