BN.com Gift Guide

Things I Want My Daughters to Know

( 56 )

Overview

How do you cope in a world without your mother?

When Barbara realizes time is running out, she writes letters to her four daughters, aware that they'll be facing the trials and triumphs of life without her at their side. But how can she leave them when they still have so much growing up to do?

Take Lisa, in her midthirties but incapable of making a commitment; or Jennifer, trapped in a stale marriage and buttoned up so tight she could burst. ...

See more details below
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (76) from $1.99   
  • New (8) from $1.99   
  • Used (68) from $1.99   
Things I Want My Daughters to Know

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.99
BN.com price

Overview

How do you cope in a world without your mother?

When Barbara realizes time is running out, she writes letters to her four daughters, aware that they'll be facing the trials and triumphs of life without her at their side. But how can she leave them when they still have so much growing up to do?

Take Lisa, in her midthirties but incapable of making a commitment; or Jennifer, trapped in a stale marriage and buttoned up so tight she could burst. Twentysomething Amanda, the traveler, has always distanced herself from the rest of the family; and then there's Hannah, a teenage girl on the verge of womanhood about to be parted from the mother she adores.

But by drawing on the wisdom in Barbara's letters, the girls might just find a way to cope with their loss. And in coming to terms with their bereavement, can they also set themselves free to enjoy their lives with all the passion and love each deserves?

This heartfelt novel by bestselling author Elizabeth Noble celebrates family, friends . . . and the glorious, endless possibilities of life.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Symbolically presiding over this emotionally powerful novel is the recently deceased Barbara Forbes. Before she succumbed to cancer, Barbara thoughtfully composed letters to each of her four daughters. This novel, Elizabeth Noble's fourth, follows the sisters as they cope with their shared loss and attempt to navigate their futures, guided partly by their mother's posthumous notes. Another engaging ensemble novel by the author of The Reading Group.
Publishers Weekly

Noble (The Reading Group) hits her stride in her tearjerker fourth novel. Before Barbara Forbes, a mother of four, succumbs to terminal cancer, she leaves words of wisdom for her four daughters in the form of letters to each of them. In the year following Barbara's death, her daughters draw strength from her words and from each other as they move forward with their lives. Lisa, the eldest, is advised to "let someone look after [her]" for a change. Jennifer, "fragile and hard to reach," struggles with an unraveling marriage. Free-spirited Amanda is thrown for a loop by a family secret, and teenaged Hannah, experiencing her first taste of rebellion, is reminded that she still has a lot of growing up to do. Though Barbara's life-is-short aphorisms are nothing new, her sharp wit and distinctive voice is a nice complement to the four nuanced stories of coping with death. (Apr.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Library Journal

Four sisters come to terms with the death of their mother over the course of one year, buoyed and buffeted by the letters and journal she left behind to guide them. Eldest daughter Lisa reaches a moment of truth with her boyfriend-to marry or not. Stoic Jennifer is at a crossroads in her marriage, complicated by the decision whether to have a baby. Amanda, consumed with wanderlust, wonders why she's always running away and considers what it would take for her to stay. And the youngest, 16-year-old Hannah, struggles to navigate her turbulent teenage years, mourning her mother while trying to comfort her father. Noble's fourth novel (after Alphabet Weekends) is a bittersweet yet ultimately uplifting story of love, family, and the bonds between mothers and daughters and among sisters. Letters and journal entries are sprinkled throughout the narrative, expanding the novel's focus to include the family's history from the very beginning and making for a sweeping, engaging, and comfortable women's fiction choice. Highly recommended for all public libraries.
—Amy Brozio-Andrews

Kirkus Reviews
A beyond-the-grave, mother/daughter heartstring-tugger, from the shrewd British novelist (Alphabet Weekends, 2007, etc.). No crying and no black at the funeral, insists Barbara, a 60-year-old mother of four girls, in the first of her to-be-read-after-I'm-gone letters to her children. Noble's story of how Barbara's daughters (and second husband) survive her premature death from cancer, aided by farewell letters and a journal, is an unashamed tear-jerker, with its lovable-but-flawed parent sending caring advice into the future to her four grieving but eventually happy girls. Noble assigns each of the main characters a more or less trumped-up problem or secret to be resolved, after which contentment reliably follows. Commitment-phobic eldest child Lisa mucks up her relationship with nice Andy by having an affair and not really wanting to accept Andy's marriage proposal, but she ends up walking down the aisle. For possibly infertile Jennifer, with her cooling marriage, all is resolved by a sex-fueled holiday and a proper chat, after which she quickly becomes pregnant. Amanda, the wanderer, needs to stop running away, digest the fact that her father was neither of Barbara's husbands and open up to flawless new boyfriend Ed. And young Hannah simply requires some space in which to grow up. A comfortable if formulaic and sentimental scenario, delivered in a light tone with professionalism and a straight face. Agent: Jonathan Lloyd/Curtis Brown
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061686597
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/20/2009
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 996,037
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Elizabeth Noble

Elizabeth Noble is the author of the internationally bestselling novels The Reading Group, The Friendship Test, and Alphabet Weekends. She lives with her husband and their two daughters in New York City.

Biography

Elizabeth Noble was born in December 1968, in Buckinghamshire, England. She was educated in England and Canada, where the family lived for several years in Toronto.

In 1990 she graduated from St. Edmund Hall, Oxford University, with a B.A. (Honors) in English language and literature. But it was the diploma (Intensive Secretarial) that she was awarded by the typing school above the Italian café in Covent Garden that got her into her chosen career -- publishing. Over a six year period she worked in the editorial, marketing, publicity, and sales departments of several big publishing houses -- moving every couple of years, once she had made a big enough mess in the filing (note to bewildered successors: check under "m" for miscellaneous). This makes her a tricky author. She speaks fluent publishing.

She took a career break -- she called it "retired" -- to have her two daughters, after her marriage in 1996. When her youngest daughter was ready to go to nursery school, and real work beckoned, she decided to try what she had been threatening to do for years, and wrote a hundred pages of The Reading Group.

Then it took her nine months to work up the courage to send it to an agent. The Reading Group was published in the UK in January 2004 and went straight to the number-one position in The Sunday Times's Fiction Bestseller list. She was supposed to be signing stock in London bookshops the day the chart was announced, but she had grown bored and was trying on trousers -- they didn't fit -- in a ladies' clothing store when the call came. So she was literally caught with her pants down.

The book has since sold almost a quarter of a million copies in the UK. But the other day her elder daughter, Tallulah, told her she would rather she got a job in a chicken plucking factory because then she would be at home more, so she doesn't think there is much danger of her getting conceited.

She has recently finished her second novel -- there were no vacancies at the chicken plucking factory -- and begun her third.

She lives with her husband and their ungrateful children in a haunted vicarage in "the safest village in Surrey," England. They obviously don't know about the ghost.

Biography courtesy of the author's official web site.

Good To Know

Some outtakes from our interview with Elizabeth Noble:

"Researching my novels has changed my life. This year alone, in the name of research, I have abseiled 100 feet off of a viaduct, learnt how to gamble, and danced on stage in a Las Vegas show. At the ripe old age of 36, I've finally realized that you are only here once, and I'm never going to say no to a new experience again (so long as its legal!)."

"I am perpetually engaged in a quest to be thinner, fitter, have better hair, and look more stylish. I'm usually losing."

"Each morning, I pump up the volume on the stereo and dance about the living room with my five- and seven-year-old daughters. It's the best ten minutes of every day."

"I am incredibly close to my parents and siblings. We have gone in very different directions -- my brother teaches mathematics in France, and my sister is a midwife -- but we all have a strong sense of family."

"My friends are hugely important to me, and spending time with them is a precious part of my life."

"I like chocolate, floral white wines, cinema, and being lazy. I love U.S. import TV -- Sex and the City, The West Wing, Desperate Housewives, and Six Feet Under (God bless HBO!)."

"I dislike almost all politicians, pushy parents, and bad manners. And I hate, hate, hate cell phones, and the fact that they mean you can never be ‘unavailable.' "

"I unwind in a hot bath with a big glass of wine, and my ultimate luxury would be 12 hours sleep a night (but my children do not agree)."

Read More Show Less
    1. Hometown:
      Wonersh, Guildford, Surrey, England
    1. Date of Birth:
      December 22, 1968
    2. Place of Birth:
      High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, England
    1. Education:
      B.A., St. Edmund Hall, Oxford University, 1990
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

Things I Want My Daughters to Know

Chapter One

June

Dear All of You,

Despite my controlling streak, there aren't too many rules, so far as the funeral goes. Do it as soon as you can, won't you? Good to get it over with. Lisa knows about the music, if you can bear to go with what I've chosen. We've talked about the committal—you know I only want you lot there, and you know which coffin, and which fabulous outfit. I'd like this poem—which, by the way, I love. Thank God for insomnia and the Internet—I'd never have found it otherwise, and you'd be stuck reading something yucky. It should be read by whoever thinks they can do it without crying, because that is my biggest rule. No crying, please. If you can manage it. Oh, and no black. Wear the brightest thing you can find in your wardrobes. Both are clichés, I know, but better the colorful one than the somber. And try and make the sun shine (although I recognize that this last one might be outside of your control). I'm not saying anything mushy in this letter—strictly business—but I daresay there will be other letters. I have other things to say—she says ominously—if I last long enough to write them . . . (don't you just love terminal illness humor?).

I'm sorry you all have to do this. I really am.

So, never-ever­ending love, as always . . .

Mum

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there, I do not sleep
I am a thousand winds that blow
I am the diamond light on snow
I am the sunlight on the ripened grain
I am the gently falling autumnrain
When you wake in the morning hush
I am the swift uplighting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight
I am the soft starlight at night
Do not stand at my grave and cry
I am not there, I do not die.

(Isn't that perfect for a funeral in a field?!)

Things I Want My Daughters to Know. Copyright ? by Elizabeth Noble. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Read More Show Less

First Chapter

Things I Want My Daughters to Know
A Novel

Chapter One

June

Dear All of You,

Despite my controlling streak, there aren't too many rules, so far as the funeral goes. Do it as soon as you can, won't you? Good to get it over with. Lisa knows about the music, if you can bear to go with what I've chosen. We've talked about the committal—you know I only want you lot there, and you know which coffin, and which fabulous outfit. I'd like this poem—which, by the way, I love. Thank God for insomnia and the Internet—I'd never have found it otherwise, and you'd be stuck reading something yucky. It should be read by whoever thinks they can do it without crying, because that is my biggest rule. No crying, please. If you can manage it. Oh, and no black. Wear the brightest thing you can find in your wardrobes. Both are clichés, I know, but better the colorful one than the somber. And try and make the sun shine (although I recognize that this last one might be outside of your control). I'm not saying anything mushy in this letter—strictly business—but I daresay there will be other letters. I have other things to say—she says ominously—if I last long enough to write them . . . (don't you just love terminal illness humor?).

I'm sorry you all have to do this. I really am.

So, never-ever­ending love, as always . . .

Mum

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there, I do not sleep
I am a thousand winds that blow
I am the diamond light on snow
I am the sunlight on the ripened grain
I am the gentlyfalling autumn rain
When you wake in the morning hush
I am the swift uplighting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight
I am the soft starlight at night
Do not stand at my grave and cry
I am not there, I do not die.

(Isn't that perfect for a funeral in a field?!)

Things I Want My Daughters to Know
A Novel
. Copyright © by Elizabeth Noble. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 56 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(26)

4 Star

(13)

3 Star

(11)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(4)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 56 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2008

    A lot of British lingo...

    This is a good book, but take note that the author is British, this is set in England and unless you are extremely familiar with with British terminology, slang, products, etc. you will not 'get' a lot of the humor & won't be able to relate to things she writes about.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 4, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Laughter Through Tears

    I picked this book after I was diagnosed with a heart problem. My daughter is 12 yrs old and I thought about the things I would want to teach her as she grows but I may not be around. This book is not a reference book by any means but it helped me to write down things that I wanted her to know in the future. I cried, laughed, cried and then laughed some more. The book was a little hard to follow at first because it's set in England with English characters. If you don't know the lingo and slang used across the pond it makes understanding some what difficult.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2008

    Heart warming book

    I believe this is Elizabeth's best novel. The diary and letters left by the mother for her daughters are wonderful. There are messages all mothers and daughters could learn from. It was heart warming as to how the book ended with all the sisters finally understanding each other and how they all had different relationships with their mother and step-father.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2014

    Just Good not Great

    Loved the beginning and the middle. Seemed like a everyday family dealing with the lose of a mother and a wife. The end however everyone got a little bit to sappy......the sisters all of a sudden were justt to beautiful and the word love was spread around a bit to much. I had to stop and check to see if i was reading the same book. Its a shame.


    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2013

    Did not enjoy this book, even though I am British and did unders

    Did not enjoy this book, even though I am British and did understand the British lingo...understanding it still did not make it funny. The characters were one dimensional, the plot boring and the end all wrapped up in an implausible neat bow. I was expecting this book to have some profound, deep advise from the mother to the daughters, but that was not the case. The mother's letters were a very small part of the book. I didn't care about any of the characters, and couldn't wait to finish.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2012

    Fabulous!

    When an author "grabs me" within the first chapter, I consider the book a good read. This was a GREAT read. Couldn't put it down. Written from a Mother's heart. I highly recommend it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 18, 2012

    I recommended

    This is a great read, it has everything a girl wants in a book!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2011

    What a great book!

    It was funny, sad, and realistic. I would diffiently recommend this book

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2011

    Loved it!!

    I went in half-heartedly, but was pleasantly surprised and deeply moved. Have 4 of my own (2girls/2boys) and I understood the book. I was between laughing and tears at the same time throughout the whole book :D... highly recommend.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 12, 2011

    wonderful

    i loved this! can't wait to read hrer other books. i am buying aa copy of thid in print for each of my 4 daughters! they need to read this.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 2, 2011

    Sweet book

    I really enjoyed this book. I adored the characters. It was a very sweet story. I would recommend it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2011

    Highly Recommended

    What a great book! I was afraid it might be rather morbid but it wasn't. It was funny in places and brings a tear to your eye in other parts. There was a lot of truth in it. It leaves you with some things to think about. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 10, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Painfully hard to get through.

    Typically, I read a book in a day or two... this one took me a week. I had to make myself finish it, even though I didn't enjoy it at all. The story line was a good idea, but I couldn't connect with the characters, or even seem to like them. They all seemed to thrive on drama, rather then fix their relationships and continue life without their mom. There also was not a lot of dialougue through the story, more of just the narartor talking. I would have enjoyed it more if their Mom's letter were tied in more. It would go 70-100 pages without seeing one of these letters. Overall, the book won't be making it on my permanent bookshelf.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 9, 2010

    Touching Story

    The characters in this novel are harshly realistic. The author does a good job of creating likeable characters that all have flaws that they're working through or dealing with. While it's an emotionally heavy read you come through the story finding each character has evolved and improved in some way. For such a sad plot you leave feeling good about the story and the characters in it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Kleenex Needed

    I read this book and could not put it down. Even though it is sad, I absolutely loved the book. Being the mother of two daughters myself, I could easily place myself in the mother's shoes. I love this author and passed the book onto both, my sister and my mother.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2009

    Touching and funny...

    4 girls work out their problems with life and eachother after the death of their mother; it was more about the girls and less about the mom than I expected. There is a lot of back and forth between characters- each girl had interesting things going on but I was sometimes confused about who we were talking about. It didn't go as deep as it could have, but I found it to be a light, enjoyable, easy read with a happy conclusion for all.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 13, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Amazing

    LOVED this book. Starts off a little slow but if you stick with it you wont be able to put it down. I shared this book with my Mother after I read it and she calls me daily to tell me how much she loves it!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 6, 2009

    Would Highly Recommend This Book

    I was completely immersed in this book from the time that I picked it up. I enjoyed each of the characters and felt a connection with the mother. Great read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 23, 2009

    Good Book!

    I really enjoyed reading this book it was an easy read and very interesting i would recomended any daughter or mother to read this book

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 30, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Touching

    Sad, yet hopeful and romantic. You can just watch & read as each daughter faces her own challenges, as well as their father. Such a great book for people that love romance!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 56 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)