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Monday, July 10, 2017

This Was Not The Plan by Cristina Alger

Charlie's life is in a whirlwind. He has just lost his wife at thirty three in an accident which is tantamount to murder. His professional life has taken over his entire life. His five year old son Caleb is a stranger to him and his twin sister Zadie is trying so very hard to keep it all together for all of them.

As a lawyer working in a pressure cooker, trying to make partner after ten years of slogging, Charlie only knows about work and nothing else. His life is spent in his office and the whole thing bursts after a seventy five hour sprint in the office without a break which results in a huge settlement for his office and the end of the life which Charlie knows.

The back stabbing that goes on in the corporate world is highlighted in this book. Avarice and jockeying for position, power and money all follow this greed and this firm and its partners are not exempt. Charlie has given them the opening gambit they need and all are waiting to grab his place if he is fired. They want to use the vacuum created by his departure to their own best advantage.

Simultaneously Zadie has decided to get engaged and very quickly married putting Charlie on the spot as to what to do with his son Caleb and how he is going to work around the loss of Zadie. A reconciliation with their long lost father, unraveling of family secrets and trying to get to grips with unsavoury facts however hard it is to face.

The story of loss in its different forms - personal and professional, grief, loss of self esteem and the sheer loneliness of being all alone is handled well in this story. How we reconcile this loss and try to move on trying to hang on to our sanity and not give in to depression and the easy way out is also very delicately told.

The book was sent to me by Netgalley, courtesy of Touchstone Publishers for an unbiased review. 


  1. Mystica, I don't remember the last time I read a novel with such conflicting elements, but that is often to be expected in a family drama full of atmosphere.

  2. Wow, it sounds like Charlie's life is about to implode. This sounds rather gut wrenching.

  3. Sounds like a very moving story!

  4. You have me interested, so will be putting it on my wish list.

  5. As emotional as it sounds you've made me want to add it to my TBR list.

  6. This sounds interesting. I appreciate sometimes reading about fatherhood among all the books about the mother/child bond.

  7. I listened to this one on audio and enjoyed it.