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Aggravated Circumstances

Aggravated Circumstances

4.4 5
by Michele Shriver

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A family can be torn apart in an instant. Putting it back together is a harder task.

A relapsed addict opens the door to find a cop with a search warrant, setting off a chain of events that will cause four lives to intersect.

Devin Lenox has already lost one child to the system and this time she vows it will be different. If she's going to make it, though, she'll


A family can be torn apart in an instant. Putting it back together is a harder task.

A relapsed addict opens the door to find a cop with a search warrant, setting off a chain of events that will cause four lives to intersect.

Devin Lenox has already lost one child to the system and this time she vows it will be different. If she's going to make it, though, she'll need something she's never had before- someone on her side.

Her battle with depression behind her, Elisa Cahill looks forward to resuming her legal career. Devin's case seems like the perfect opportunity to do that, and bury her own past demons in the process, at least if old grudges don't prove to be her undoing.

Child protection worker Taylor Ross struggles to balance a social life with her demanding job and has little sympathy for people like Devin, at least at first. When Taylor starts to see Devin in a new light, she finds herself at odds with her superiors. Will she be willing to go to bat for Devin, and what price will she pay if she does?

Sarah Canfield is a compassionate judge who is not afraid to make difficult decisions, but will her past link to Devin undermine her objectivity and cause her to put her own family at risk?

A look inside the child welfare system, the people who work in it and the lives it impacts, Aggravated Circumstances is a story of despair, hope and recovery.

Product Details

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.58(d)

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Aggravated Circumstances 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Darla-Mawson More than 1 year ago
Another excellent book by Michele Shriver! An excellent look at the problems social workers have in today's world. Well done!
RenieTX More than 1 year ago
My favorite of this authors works. This book truly made you care about the outcome. This book makes you sad an happy at different intervals, which  is a sign  of a good book. Devin  is a character you may hate but  you want her to break through the mold, 
CRhondeau More than 1 year ago
I wasn't too sure about this book at first. How in the world would the author convince me to care whether or not a drug addict lost custody of her daughter? However, I loved this author's other work, so I gave it a try. Boy, am I ever glad I did! I love this book. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself rooting for Devin (the drug addict) before very long. She does start out a little rough. However, I think her struggles were captured in a realistic manner and I soon became invested in her life, racing through the pages to find out whether or not she would overcome her demons and be reunited with her daughter. I also loved the other characters. Elisa (Devin's lawyer) was an especial favorite of mine. The sense of humor portrayed throughout by all four of the main characters really kept things entertaining despite the serious themes in this book. I also loved the touch of romance portrayed throughout. Sarah (the judge) has a lot riding on this case, more than just inside the courtroom. She is a really great character who I've loved in other novels by Michele Shriver. The look into Sarah's private life and the hard choices she faces kept me intrigued and worried. Another great book by this author and one you don't want to miss. I highly recommend it!
MayoLovesBooks More than 1 year ago
Aggravated Circumstances is a book that really makes people think..Wow, Can that really happen??  Unfortunately they can.  This story about a drug addicted mother who has previously lost one child to the system, comes dangerously close to losing another.  After her daughter is taken from her, Devin is forced to decide whether or not she's worth fighting for. A real to life story of the trials and tribulations of what Devin must do to try and win back her daughter, and at some points, it seems like no matter how hard she tries, it's just never enough. I loved how all the players involved (a single mom, a dating child support worker, a married lawyer, and a judge in a same sex marriage with 2 adopted children.  How much better can things get.  Great Book!  I look forward to more from this author.
JerseyGirlBookReviews More than 1 year ago
Aggravated Circumstances is an intriguing story about the child welfare system and the affect it has on four women when an emotional circumstance within the system arises that intertwines their lives. Author Michele Shriver utilizes her legal experience to weave a fascinating and realistic tale told in the alternating first and third person narratives, that captivates the reader's attention as they follow this emotionally charged story about one drug addicted woman's attempt to get clean and reclaim her child who has been put in the child welfare system, and the three women who work within different areas of the system. The main portion of the storyline delves into the story of Devin Lenox, a young stripper who is a relapsed drug addict. Devin has lived a hard life, the demon she fights is drug addiction. Five years ago Devin had her parental rights terminated for her first born daughter Emily. Now five years later, Devin finds herself working the system to maintain her parental rights for her twenty-two month old daughter Hannah. This time she wants to prove that she will not fail as a parent. The three women who are brought into Devin's circumstances all work within an area of the child welfare system. As the three women walk a fine line in this new case involving Devin, each has her own demons that she is fighting. Elisa Cahill is an attorney who has battled depression, and is slowly rebuilding her law practice. Devin asks Elisa to represent her in her drug and parental rights case. Taylor Ross is a state social worker with the New Hampshire Division For Children, Youth and Families. Taylor has a history with Devin, she was the social worker that was called to work the original case five years ago, and is once again called to work this latest case involving Devin. Taylor's demon is that she has become jaded to the system and its process. Taylor's demanding job has left her struggling to find a balance between her work and having a social life. Sarah Canfield is the presiding judge in the juvenile court system. Sarah has a history with Devin that causes her concern in regard to the new case that is brought before her. Sarah and her partner Kelsey used to be registered foster parents when she was an attorney. They have a nine year old adopted son named Ryan, and a five year old adopted daughter named Emily. Elisa had handled the adoption of Emily for Sarah and Kelsey after Devin's parental rights were terminated, and Taylor had been the social worker on the parental termination and adoption case. This is a riveting story that transports the reader into the interconnected lives of these four women as they balance the process of a life altering issue within the child welfare system with their own personal affairs. I really enjoyed that the storyline alternated between Devin's first person perspective with the third person perspectives of the other three women. The reader can't help but become emotionally invested in the four women's lives as they work through their personal and professional struggles. I think the author provides the reader with a storyline that is emotional and dramatic; with four realistic, vibrant and different women whose interconnected lives and personal stories speak to the reader's heart; and an accurate portrayal of the inner workings of the child welfare system that draws upon the reader's compassion. Aggravated Circumstances is a compelling and touching story that will resonate with you for a long time.