Before the storm

Diane Chamberlain, 1950-

Book - 2008

Laural Lockwood's 15-year-old son Andy is "special". She lost him once through neglect, but is determined to make up for her mistakes. When she allows Andy to attend a local church social she is terrified when the church is consumed by fire. Andy survives and saves other children as well. Initially Andy basks in the role of unlikely hero but when the suspicion of arson is cast upon Andy, Laurel must ask herself how well she really knows her son, and how far she'll go to k...eep her promise to protect him forever.

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FICTION/Chamberlain, Diane
1 / 1 copies available
Location Call Number   Status
1st Floor FICTION/Chamberlain, Diane Checked In
Subjects
Published
Don Mills, Ont. : MIRA c2008.
Language
English
Physical Description
470 p. ; 20 cm
ISBN
9780778325413
0778325415
Main Author
Diane Chamberlain, 1950- (-)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Laurel Lockwood became a devoted single mother, raising Maggie, 17, and Andy, 15, after her husband died in a freak accident. After Andy was born, he was taken away to a foster home because of Laurel's alcoholism, a disorder brought on by postpartum depression. She is recovering, but he suffers from fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. He is small for his age and has trouble interpreting social situations since he takes everything literally. One day, Laurel allows him to attend a church lock-in with other children his age in their small community on Topsail Island, North Carolina. A fire breaks out and Andy becomes a hero when he finds the only exit and leads most of the group to safety. But later, when the fire is classified as arson and Andy becomes the prime suspect, Laurel soon learns that there is much she doesn't know about her children or, indeed, anyone around her. Chamberlain's heartbreaking tale frankly and sensitively explores postpartum depression and the toll it takes on families. Copyright 2008 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Chamberlain (The Bay at Midnight ) lays out her latest piece of romantic suspense in a shattered chronology that's as graceful as it is perfectly paced. Most of the adults in the tightly knit coastal community of Topsail Island, N.C., accept the widowed Laurel Lockwood's 15-year-old mentally disabled son, Andy. But when Andy saves many of the town's youth during a tragic fire, he becomes a local hero who garners national attention. Laurel, caught up with making sure Andy is okay, thinks daughter Maggie, a high school senior, can handle herself. What Maggie hides from everyone are her slipping grades, a taboo affair and a terrible secret, and when the fire's origins are investigated and Andy is a person of interest, events turn progressively darker for the family. Long, juicy flashbacks cover the mysteries of Laurel's husband's death, of Andy's condition and of Laurel's preoccupation with him. Chamberlain offers no easy solutions, but her engrossing prose leads the way to redemption. (June) [Page 44]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

An overprotective parent, Laurel Lockwood is terrified when the church where her son is attending a church social is consumed by fire and delighted when Andy not only survives but saves other children from the flames, until she discovers that Andy has fallen under suspicion of arson for starting the fire. Original. 50,000 first printing.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Laural Lockwood's 15-year-old son Andy is "special". She lost him once through neglect, but is determined to make up for her mistakes. When she allows Andy to attend a local church social she is terrified when the church is consumed by fire. Andy survives and saves other children as well. Initially Andy basks in the role of unlikely hero but when the suspicion of arson is cast upon Andy, Laurel must ask herself how well she really knows her son, and how far she'll go to keep her promise to protect him forever.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

An overprotective parent, Laurel Lockwood is terrified when the church where her son is attending a church social is consumed by fire and delighted when Andy not only survives but saves other children from the flames, until she discovers that Andy has fallen under suspicion of arson for starting the fire.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

Fifteen-year-old Andy Lockwood is special. Others notice the way he blurts out anything that comes into his mind, how he cannot foresee consequences, that he's more child than teenager. But his mother sees a boy with a heart as open and wide as the ocean.Laurel Lockwood lost her son once through neglect. She's spent the rest of her life determined to make up for her mistakes, and she's succeeded in becoming a committed, protective parent—maybe even overprotective. Still, she loosens her grip just enough to let Andy attend a local church social—a decision that terrifies her when the church is consumed by fire. But Andy survives…and remarkably, saves other children from the flames. Laurel watches as Andy basks in the role of unlikely hero and the world finally sees her Andy, the sweet boy she knows as well as her own heart.But when the suspicion of arson is cast upon Andy, Laurel must ask herself how well she really knows her son…and how far she'll go to keep her promise to protect him forever.

Review by Publisher Summary 5

Fifteen-year-old Andy Lockwood is special. Others notice the way he blurts out anything that comes into his mind, how he cannot foresee consequences, that he's more child than teenager. But his mother sees a boy with a heart as open and wide as the ocean.Laurel Lockwood lost her son once through neglect. She's spent the rest of her life determined to make up for her mistakes, and she's succeeded in becoming a committed, protective parent—maybe even overprotective. Still, she loosens her grip just enough to let Andy attend a local church social—a decision that terrifies her when the church is consumed by fire. But Andy survives…and remarkably, saves other children from the flames. Laurel watches as Andy basks in the role of unlikely hero and the world finally sees her Andy, the sweet boy she knows as well as her own heart.But when the suspicion of arson is cast upon Andy, Laurel must ask herself how well she really knows her son…and how far she'll go to keep her promise to protect him forever.