🎶BOOK Tour and Review🎨
Q: If you had a memoir, what sub-genre would it be (thriller, romance, etc.)?
With or Without You
Stella and Simon have been together for years and are entering their 40s now. Stella, a nurse, wants to settle down with a family and a home. Simon isn’t ready, his once popular band has just gotten another break by a younger band who wants them to open for them.
When they were about to fly out to the opening gig they were drinking some wine and Simon talked her into taking a pill like old times since all they’ve been doing is fighting and this used to bring them closer. The next morning Stella was unresponsive.
Simon didn’t go with the band and stayed with Stella. He grew close to her mother and best friend while Stella was in a coma. Once she woke up she wasn’t the same.
There were so many feelings in this book! Before the accident there could have been a breakup but after it seemed like they were different people and couldn’t get anywhere near where they were before. Simon had to step up and do all the tasks that Stella had been doing for him and not go with his band, giving up his dream to stay with her. That part was heartbreaking but sometimes those hard choices have to be made. There were a lot of choices made in this book, a lot of regrets and oh my goodness a lot of words used out of context. Have you ever talked about someone and not known they were listening? Words have such an impact and can alter the course of your life. I try to be thoughtful when I talk to my kids but they still hear what they hear. Also, in high stress times bonds form so much faster and can bring together unions that may not have normally developed.
I am going to be thinking about these characters for a long time they were so well-developed and I would like Stella to paint a portrait of me or Simon to write me a song or Libby to be my doctor.
Defintely a 5🌟 because this broke me apart and I felt for all sides since it was multi POV. No one was to blame, it was just … not fair. One choice is all it takes sometimes to change the course of multiple lives.
Thank you @suzyapprovedbooktours and @carolineleavitt for having me on this tour!
About The Book:
New York Times bestselling author Caroline Leavitt writes novels that expertly explore the struggles and conflicts that people face in their search for happiness. For the characters in With or Without You, it seems at first that such happiness can come only at someone else’s expense. Stella is a nurse who has long suppressed her own needs and desires to nurture the dreams of her partner, Simon, the bass player for a rock band that has started to lose its edge. But when Stella gets unexpectedly ill and falls into a coma just as Simon is preparing to fly with his band to Los Angeles for a gig that could revive his career, Simon must learn the meaning of sacrifice, while Stella’s best friend, Libby, a doctor who treats Stella, must also make a difficult choice as the coma wears on.
When Stella at last awakes from her two-month sleep, she emerges into a striking new reality where Simon and Libby have formed an intense bond, and where she discovers that she has acquired a startling artistic talent of her own: the ability to draw portraits of people in which she captures their innermost feelings and desires. Stella’s whole identity, but also her role in her relationships, has been scrambled, and she has the chance to form a new life, one she hadn’t even realized she wanted.
A story of love, loyalty, loss, and resilience, With or Without You is a page-turner that asks the question, What do we owe the other people in our lives, and when does the cost become too great?
About The Author:
Caroline Leavitt is the award-winning author of twelve novels, including the New York Times bestsellers Pictures of You and Is This Tomorrow. Her essays and stories have been included in New York magazine, Psychology Today, More, Parenting, Redbook, and Salon. She’s a book critic for People, the Boston Globe, and the San Francisco Chronicle, and she teaches writing online at Stanford and UCLA. http://www.carolineleavitt.com
“What if Snow White woke up and decided she didn’t much like Prince Charming? Something like that happens in Leavitt’s latest novel . . . One character’s coma is only the first surprise in this satisfying story of middle-aged love.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“A page-turner by The New York Times bestselling author and co-founder of “A Mighty Blaze,” this story about a nurse who falls into a coma raises issues of loyalty, friendship, love and life, all set to music.”—Good Morning America Online (New Must-Read Books for the Ultimate Escape in August)
“By the author of 2010’s best-selling Pictures of You, among other novels, it’s a moving story with characters you can’t help but care for, especially Stella, who must build a new life after her brush with death.”—AARP “2020 Summer Book Preview: 12 Unique Novels to Choose From”
“Leavitt’s seamless writing easily carries readers through the compelling story . . . Leavitt’s fans and readers of domestic drama will be thrilled.”—Booklist
“A poignant, instantly compelling novel…This is an unflinchingly raw and honest novel, but it is also propulsive and suspenseful. The characters are so wholly realized and developed that they seem to move on their own, with Leavitt simply pulling the strings above them. She is a brave and risk-taking author, and With or Without You is a perfect picture of what she can do when left with a spark of inspiration and a gripping premise.”—Bookreporter.com
“What I like best about Leavitt—her signature perhaps—is her fearlessness with plot. I’ll take a good coma story with a miracle recovery anytime.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune
“Engaging, emotional, and even joyous, it may be the perfect novel for this moment in time . . . The prose is so propulsive I nearly got whiplash turning the pages.”—Long Island Woman Magazine
“A redemption tale anchored in a medical chronicle, threaded with the finest filaments of magical realism.”—The Santa Fe New Mexican
“A wonderful novel about life as mess and disappointment, life as catastrophe and regret, but also life as transformation and resilience. Leavitt’s characters are great company, and watching them find a way forward in their suddenly altered world is a joy. Deeply engaging, tense but hopeful, and completely recommended.”—Karen Joy Fowler, author of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
“With or Without You is a compulsively readable novel of artistic ambition and the various betrayals lovers and friends both endure and inflict on each other. It also asks fascinating questions about the stability of the self and our capacity—erhaps even our secret desire?—to reinvent ourselves. Caroline Leavitt is a born storyteller, and this is one knockout of a story.”—Christopher Castellani, author of Leading Men
“Caroline Leavitt has accomplished in With or Without You the hardest but most profound task of the novelist: she makes us not only understand but care about characters as flawed as ourselves. Stella, Simon, and Libby straddle the ravine between hip urbanity and soulful vulnerability—each achieving a redemption that gives us hope that we might too.”—Lisa Gornick, author of The Peacock Feast
“With or Without You is a moving novel about twists of fate, the shifting terrain of love, and coming into your own. With tenderness and incisive insight, Leavitt spotlights a woman’s unexpected journey towards her art.”—Madeline Miller, New York Times bestselling author of Circe