Title: Millicent Glenn’s Last Wish
Author: Tori Whitaker
Published: October 2020, Lake Union Publishing
Format: Paperback, 352 pages
Three generations of women—and the love, loss, sacrifice, and secrets that can bind them forever or tear them apart.
Glenn is self-sufficient and contentedly alone in the Cincinnati
suburbs. As she nears her ninety-first birthday, her daughter Jane, with
whom she’s weathered a shaky relationship, suddenly moves back home.
Then Millie’s granddaughter shares the thrilling surprise that she’s
pregnant. But for Millie, the news stirs heartbreaking memories of a
past she’s kept hidden for too long. Maybe it’s time she shared
something, too. Millie’s last wish? For Jane to forgive her.
years ago Millie was living a dream. She had a husband she adored, a
job of her own, a precious baby girl, and another child on the way. They
were the perfect family. All it took was one irreversible moment to
shatter everything, reshaping Millie’s life and the lives of generations
As Millie’s old wounds are exposed, so are the secrets
she’s kept for so long. Finally revealing them to her daughter might be
the greatest risk a mother could take in the name of love.
My thoughts: There is nothing I love more than discovering debut authors and when that debut author hits it out of the park I can’t be more ecstatic because I now have a new author to look forward to reading. And this book hit on all the things I love when it comes to women’s fiction.
When it comes to family drama – I’m all in. Coming from a large family, you know there is going to be drama – we had it in spades! So I love nothing more than reading about it because I just find it so fascinating. But what Tori Whitaker does here is nothing short of genius. She delves into such a wonderful bevy of hot topics that you can’t help but not only fall in love with Millicent Glenn but at the same time have all the feelings at the injustices that were done to her during her early years.
I love a book that is able to evoke such strong emotions and that is what this one does, effortlessly moving back in forth in time from the present to the past. Millicent, in her 90’s, often looks back on her early life, and it is during those flashbacks that we learn all the challenges that she faced in her life. And you come to understand why she kept some things a secret, even from her own daughter.
There is so much more I could say about this book, but that would spoil just how wonderful it really is. I do think it would make a great book club pick as there is so much to discuss, particularly what life was like for women during the 1950s, as well as the bonds between mothers/daughters and the effects of keeping secrets. There is just so much to unpack here but whether you read it with a bookclub or you read it on your own, I highly recommend picking it up. It’s a book that makes you wonder – things have certainly come a long way and we often complain that maybe it would be better to go back to simpler times, but would it really? How much would we have to give up if we were to go back? Pick this book up and you will understand what I mean!