What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty is a thought-provoking plot that isn’t too heavy to be considered a light read, which is great for people like me who like to read as a relaxation activity.
The story begins when Alice falls off her bicycle at the gym which causes her to lose the last ten years of her life. She gets to the hospital to discover that her and her beloved husband are in the middle of a messy divorce and the child she thinks is growing in her womb is a crabby pre-teen.
Alice doesn’t like the woman she has become in many ways. She cannot believe how uptight she has become and how did she have three children when the plan was for two? The amazing old house her and her soon to be ex had bought has become the home of their dreams and her mom has become a salsa dancing queen, both positive things, but not expected.
While learning about this new self, she discovers that her and her sister’s relationship has faltered over the missing ten years and there is a void there she wants to fill. Her sister’s story is one of multiple vitro fertilization and subsequent miscarriages, shedding some light on what it is like for infertile couples wanting to have children. The adoption sub-plot is in her story.
Her sister has always stated she would not adopt because of her husband’s experience as an adoptee. Through-out the book the sister and her husband work through their grief. Reading from this perspective was eye-opening. As an adoptive parent who already had two biological children before adopting, I try to be sensitive to people who have adopted through the life experience of infertility. I have no idea how a women who is infertile feels, and do not want to ever try to assume. I do not see adoption as an easy answer to infertility. I do think that What Alice Forgot did a nice job exploring adoption after infertililty.
I don’t want to give any spoilers, but I was very pleased with how the book ended. I was glad it wasn’t a cookie-cutter ending!