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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.6 out of 5
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  • Heartbreaking!

    The plot is deceptively simple. A young single mother is overly rough with her son who has undiagnosed special needs. She’s reported to Child Services and after some court complications, loses custody of the boy for three months. The foster parents, new to the program, are an excellent choice. Upper middle class, parents of two teenage children, they are warm and welcoming. However, there’s so much more in this heartbreaking, beautifully written story. In When You Were Mine, Kate Hewitt lays motherhood and all its surrounding problems and doubts bare. Beth, the single mother of seven year old Dylan, is reluctantly forced to confront her neediness and change her parenting style. Ally, the foster mother, sees that her perfect life has wide cracks under the surface. As the two mothers become friends, they share advice. Ally asks “ why do we so often blame mother’s for their children’s choices?” and rationalizes that mothers make mistakes but try to do their best. Beth tells her the secret is to “Show up - again and again, even when they mess up big time.” While motherhood is at the center of this emotional novel, there are other important issues. We see that while Beth’s partner is physically absent, Ally’s husband is often emotionally absent, spending time alone in his home office. Both women then have to deal with the majority of daily childcare on their own. While Ally tries to be a sort of super mother to her teenage children, she misses signals as she prides herself on their achievements. We also see the workings of Child Services (in this case, in Connecticut). The case workers try to do their best but they deal with too many cases and cannot give as much individual attention as they should. When You Were Mine is at times painful to read. It overflows with raw emotion and will bring you to tears. 5 stars. Thank you to NetGalley, Bookouture and Kate Hewitt for this ARC.

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  • Drama, Characters are Strong $ Alive to the Reader

    Get a tissue because this book will break your heart! Our foster care system is truly there to help families, but it’s not the best and they are human. It has cracks, but if we can get one thing out of this book it’s that we all should definitely help in some kind of capacity to homeless families! The author does such an exceptional job at making the characters so humble and interesting that they become real to you! I felt for Beth and Ally! At times I wanted to choke the foster care workers! Then I wanted to smack Nick , Ally’s husband and shake Ally as well. However, we see them all grow and develop and I cried with them and was happy with them when Dylan reached goals! This is one of those books that I just couldn’t put down! I definitely would recommend this book to anyone looking for a great drama! I received an advanced copy from NetGalley and these are my willingly given thoughts and opinions.

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  • Loved!!!!!

    My Review: I normally don’t read these touchy feely warm hearted stories but OMG I couldn’t put this one down. It was just that good, no I mean great. Warning, you better have some tissues ready and waiting. This is definitely a tear jerker. This is my first book by Kate Hewitt and it won’t be my last. So glad I went outside my comfort zone and tried something else. This book was about two mothers who in the end needed to find each other. One mothers son was taken away and the other mother stepped in for her. How are their worlds so vastly different but yet so similar? How are are they going to get along? Are they ever going to come together and work as a team? These answers may surprise you. I want to start off by saying how much I loved this book and really connected with each character in the book. I felt their sadness when they cried. I felt their happiness when they smiled. Each character touched my heart so deeply and will affect me on some level for many years to come. Now lets talk about that story line. A child who is taken away from his beloved mother and a mother who is trying so desperately to get him back. I really felt for this mother. She may have been over the top but I really thought she was trying her best. All mothers make mistakes. It’s part of being a parent. Did her mistakes cost her everything, yes they did. She really did redeem herself in the end though. She grew into something better and it was what her son needed all along. With this book I really felt like I was watching a feel good Hallmark Movie that I never wanted to end. Between the plot, characters and all the twists in this book it made it an easy and fast read. I would definitely recommend it and happily give it 5 Hearts❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

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  • Sweet, Heartfelt Story

    A single mother struggling to make ends meet is having a hard time with her special needs son. A typical temper tantrum in the local CVS changes their whole world and she is forced to give him to a foster family while she is forced to go to counseling. She resists at first, but realizes sometimes you do what you have to do, especially if it means getting your child back. You soon learn the family who take him in are far from perfect themselves, although they appear to be. The mom soon starts questioning if he would be better off with his foster family because there is no way she could ever provide him with what they do, but those things are material and what matters the most is love. Mom gains the support system she's never had in the most unlikeliest of places, and it makes for a fantastic woman's drama, if you are into this kind of genre. I thorougly enjoyed this book! Thank you NetGalley for another fantastic find!

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  • Must read tearjerker and heartwarming story!

    Finally, an author who understand what it’s like to be a mother! When You Were Mine, by Kate Hewitt, is such a beautiful and accurate portrayal of the unanswerable questions mothers have and a testimony to the sacrifices mothers make to do what they feel is best for their child. How do you know if you’re doing what’s best when so many choices have to be based on instinct? Is it even possible to love your child too much? Is it possible to sacrifice too much of yourself when it comes to loving and raising your child? Isn’t that part of what motherhood is all about? Kate Hewitt does a brilliant job portraying the best and hardest moments of being a mother. When You Were Mine, by Kate Hewitt is sure to touch your heart, make you reach for Kleenex, and bring you insurmountable joy as you stumble along the way with Beth and Ally to find the answers to the hardest questions mothers face. When You Were Mine, by Kate Hewitt, IS the perfect guide to motherhood and raising children! Kate Hewitt’s undeniably truthful account of two mothers, the struggles they face, the depth of theIr love,, and the blessings and successes they find along the way will resonate within your soul long after you finish reading it. Beth is a single mother, and has done her best to raise Dylan on her own without the support of family members or friends. Dylan has never been an easy child. Since Beth doesn’t have a good relationship with her father, her mother ran out on her when she was a teenager, and Dylan’s father left when Dylan was young, she’s left to fend for herself. She’s isolated herself from the world because it’s the only way she can manage her and her son’s lives. Dylan is prone to outbursts and screaming tantrums, has always shown high levels of anxiety, and is selectively mute, so she does the best she can to provide for him and meet his needs. Not knowing any other way to help him, she has built her life around his specific needs. She knows that showing him unwavering love is crucial to raising a happy and healthy child, so she has always done the best she can. It’s not that easy though, and it never has been. Despite her best efforts, and the facade she has created of a happy home life, the walls she so carefully constructed around their lives begin to crumble. Although the Department of Children and Families is built on the foundation of trying to do what’s best for children, Beth is sure they’ve made a mistake when they remove Dylan from her home and place him in foster care. Once in the system, always in the system, so Beth has always gone out of her way to give them answers to placate and satisfy them. Since the calls about her and Dylan have always seemed to be exaggerated, in her heart she knows that she really is doing what’s best for Dylan. Sure, her parenting methods may seem over the top, but she would never dream of hurting him and has always raised him with undeniable love. How could the Department of Children and Families possibly think she’s done wrong by loving him too much? That’s most certainly not abusive so their intrusion into their lives must be a warped mistake. When Dylan is placed into foster care with the seemingly picture perfect family, Beth is left feeling lost, alone, confused, and terrified for Dylan’s well being because it’s impossible for this strange new family to understand his unique needs. Ally has always felt secure in the decisions she’s made with her husband when it coms to raising her children. Although there’s no such thing as the perfect family or perfect parents, the home life Ally’s created and the happiness and success of her children are a testament to her being a good mother. With a daughter at Harvard and a teenage son who is largely recognized for his accomplishments, Ally decides that it’s time to help others in need as a way of sharing their good fortune and paying it forward. She know’s it’s a delicate topic with her husband because of his upbringing, but when he agrees with her about being a foster parent for Dylan, they know they’re doing the right thing. However skeptical they initially may be since Dylan is the first foster child they have ever welcomed into their home, Ally is determined to make a difference in his live. Neither of them are prepared for his entrance into their lives though, and his unwillingness to talk makes things harder than either of them has imagined. When Beth shows up at their home for her first hour of visitation, neither of them can understand why the Department of Children and Families even took him away from her to begin with. Sure, his behaviors are eccentric and his clothes not quite ideal, but that’s hardly an indicator of an unstable or unsafe home for a child. It’s obvious how much they love one another, and Dylan has never shown any signs of having been abused. The two women realize they have more in common than either would’ve first assumed. The ending is a guaranteed tearjerker surprise!

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