The Road She Left Behind

The Road She Left Behind

by Christine Nolfi

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“A great pick for your book club this summer.” —Working Mother

Crushed by guilt over the car accident that killed her father and sister, and torn apart by her mother’s resentment, Darcy Goodridge fled her family estate eight years ago and hasn’t looked back. Now an unexpected phone call threatens to upend what little serenity she’s found. Her nephew, Emerson, who was just a baby when his mother died, has gone missing. Darcy must return home and face her past in order to save him.

Once back in Ohio, Darcy realizes there’s more to Emerson’s disappearance—and to the sudden retirement of her mother, Rosalind—than meets the eye. As she works to make inroads with Rosalind, Darcy begins to unravel a decades-old secret that devastated her family and forced a wedge between her and Michael Varano, the man she left heartbroken when she vanished after the funeral. After carrying the scars of that fateful night for almost a decade, Darcy is determined to find closure, healing, and maybe even love where she lost them all in the first place—right back home where she belongs.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781542004213
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 06/11/2019
Pages: 316
Sales rank: 161,995
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Award-winning author Christine Nolfi writes heartwarming and inspiring fiction. She is the author of the award-winning Sweet Lake Series: Sweet Lake, The Comfort of Secrets, and The Season of Silver Linings. A native of Ohio, Christine now resides in South Carolina with her husband and four adopted children. For the latest information about her releases and future books, visit Chat with her on Twitter @christinenolfi.

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The Road She Left Behind 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 20 reviews.
Itsahardbacklife4me 14 days ago
The Road She Left Behind by @christinenolfi was beautiful and touching. This is the first I’ve read by her and she hooked me from the beginning. Darcy lost her sister and father in the same night. The guilt that plagues her forces her to leave home and move around for 8 years. She makes 1 friend in those 8 years- a foster child named Samson. When her nephew goes missing- she is forced to return home and try to salvage the estranged relationship with her mother. Nolfi made me fall in love with the characters- so much that I was devastated when it ended!! I hope there’s a sequel!!!
lauriesophee 14 days ago
"We've all got a star in the heavens. one made special just for us." This novel portrays love, family, friendship, heartache and a lot of guilt. The main character, Darcy returns to Ohio to find her eight year old nephew, Emerson. She also will find herself in this process after feeling lost for years. Messages have been missed, misconstrued and hidden deep under the carpet over the years. The Goodridge family need to iron them out before time runs out. A wonderful story with characters I will not forget anytime soon. These people are so real that you feel as though they are friends. If I have to pick a favorite, it would be Emerson. A young boy with insight, sensitivity and a heart filled with love looking for his star! A delightful novel as are all of Christine Nolfi's books!
MatteaLC 14 days ago
Another must read by Christine Nolte. We meet Darcy Goodridge, as she leaves job number eight, headed for number nine, when she gets a call from her mother’s housekeeper, imploring her to come home. Grudgingly she does, reluctant to experience a reunion with her estranged mother, after eight years. So we are introduced to her family and neighbors, where secrets, lingering conflicts and heartache have alienated many. But her young nephew Emerson needs some stability in his life, and Darcy may be the right one to provide it. But first, she must try to repair the relationships that she has been running from, and settle her own conflicts. Christine Nolte is a talented story teller, with lovely locations, well developed and complicated characters and the ability to draw the reader in. I really enjoyed everything about this book, and appreciate the ARC for my honest review. I highly recommend it!
rokinrev 15 days ago
"Pride, Nella mused, is an exceptional hardship. Like carrying a block of cement on your back for all your natural-born days." The road Darcy Goodwin left behind has come back around to where she started as she is forced to return home to deal with what she ran from 8 years before. After the frightful accident that killed her father and her sister,Darcy left for anywhere other than Chagrin Falls, her hometown. Now, eight years later she returns to what's left of her family to deal with present reality whether she wants to or not. Her mother and her 8 year old nephew need her. Rosalind Goodwin is ill, but no one knows how badly she's faring. A leave of absence from the bench has become a forced retirement and left her bereft. Her grandson Emerson knows something is wrong, but although he is wise beyond his years, he's still a kid. Darcy promised his mother, her sister, that she's care for him, but her departure nullified that ... Can she be mature enough to re-glue the family together and guide them into the future? It may be a road less traveled in the past, but Christine Nolfi helps us make sense of the backstory and gives us hope for the future. Read this knowing you'll need tissues as you will laugh, cry and care for all the characters in this lovely story of courage, change and loss. Highly Recommended 5/5 [ I received this book from the author and voluntarily reviewed it]
Boundlessbookreviews 15 days ago
Darcy is on the move again. When an unexpected call comes in, she finds herself on the move to the one place she never planned to go back....home. She spent her life moving around, never staying in one place long and never making connections, running from her past and running from her grief. Now she's back home dealing with the past she ran away from and hoping to have a brighter future with a family she left behind. This was the first book by Christine Nolfi that I had the honor of reading and it was awesome. It was such a heartwarming story of family and at the center is heartache. This story has such a strong set of characters. Emerson, of course, was my favorite. For a young boy, he is so bright and a little handful and so fun to fall in love with. Darcy, Latrice, Samson, and yes, even Rosalind spin a tale of heartache and family that you can't help but love. It was full of love, heartache, drama, and family.  This book was one I can say that I could read and reread even though it gave me a roller coaster of emotions. It was sad and happy all at the same time. I caught myself in tears and then a bit later I was laughing. It was written in a way that is easy to love and get into. Once I picked it up, I couldn't put it down. After reading this book, I can say with 100% honesty that this will not be my last book by this fantastic author. If you love a book centered around family and a tearjerker that will have you on the edge of your seat, then please get this book. You will love it just as much as I did. 
TheBookBag 15 days ago
The Road She Left Behind just blew me away. Such a great story—such turmoil and emotions. Darcy is running away from her past, running for eight years. Then all of sudden, she gets pulled back to the life that she was running to avoid. There are so many secrets and lies from the past, things that cannot be forgiven—until they need to be in order for life to move on. The relationships and drama between the characters is what intrigued me about this story. Everyone and everything is so intertwined that figuring it all out is what drove me to keep turning the pages. The story has amazing, strong, and interesting characters—characters who fight, support, and love each other. I loved the interactions between Rosalind, the staunch, upstanding judge, and her eight year old grandson, who is truly wise beyond his years. I was excited to start reading The Road She Left Behind and was sad when I got to the last page. I wasn't ready to be done with this adventure and my time in this wonderful story. This is definitely a book that you are going to want to read as soon as possible. "The things you own don't bring happiness."
gmcootie 15 days ago
There’s a saying you can never go home again. Is that really true? Well, Darcy Goodridge is about to find out. She ran away eight years ago when her father and sister died in a horrible car accident and has never considering coming home. She never felt truly loved or wanted by her mother in the first place, and the resentment after the accident was more than she could bear. So she left her mother and her infant nephew, and the man she loved, behind and began a transient life, never really making any deep connections and moving on every year because she couldn’t stand the thought of losing any more. But now her nephew has run away and she must go home to try and find him, and to see if there is anything left of the life she escaped. What a wonderful, superbly told story this is. The people feel so real, you can imagine you are right there with them. So many secrets, such heartbreak. So many misunderstandings. Isn’t it time for it all to stop? But can it? This is a book with a marvelous, compelling cast of characters, all with a backstory and tale to tell. So true to life. Even the unlikable folks have redeeming qualities, and your favorites have some flaws. And Darcy’s young friend Samson is a precious treat. As the story unfolds you learn more and more about the role everyone has played in this tragedy with long roots. Many surprises that you won’t see coming. Thank you, author Christine Nolfi for writing this beautiful story and thank you, NetGalley for the privilege of reading and reviewing an advance copy of The Road She Left Behind. It makes you laugh and it makes you cry but ultimately it leaves you smiling because you feel so fulfilled and satisfied.
lsmoore_43 15 days ago
When I pick up a book by Christine Nolfi I know I’m in for a great ride. She writes southern fiction/women’s fiction like no one else. Her books are always a treat and so worth reading. The Road She Left Behind is the perfect title for this awesome book. I started it and had such a hard time putting it down. I fell for the characters like they were long lost friends. There were a couple that I didn’t like, Jack, Darcy’s dad. He was a jerk of the worst kind. I also didn’t like Rosalind, Darcy’s mother. I did learn to like her and understand some of why she was the way she was. By the end I came to like her a lot and have lots of respect for her also. My favorite character was Michael. He seemed to be such a kind and gentle person who loved Darcy with all his heart. Also all of his life. He was the kind of man all women need. Emerson, Darcy’s nephew was one smart kid. His look at things was so refreshing. He is one smart kid too. He was a very kind child and had a way of making everyone fall in love with him. I certainly did. Samson, Darcy’s young friend who insisted on coming back home with her. He was recently aged out of the foster system and looked up to Darcy completely. He would tell her like it was at times too. He was a great kid and didn’t take his friendship with Darcy lightly. He would stand up to anyone for her. I really did like him. He was someone that you would love to know for sure. Smart, kind and loving.. Samson is on his way to a great life. Tippi and Nella are the next door neighbors and Nella was Rosalind’s best friend until a betrayal ended that. Nella, Michael’s mother, lived a life of guilt and would give anything to turn back time and do things differently. Tippi, Nella’s mother and Michael’s grandmother was a feisty woman who loved flirting and playing poker. She loved to cook and cause a bit of mischief when she would. Darcy.... She was the strong young woman this whole story is about. She’s way stronger than she thinks and has lived her life in so much pain and guilt for the last eight years. She blames herself for her dad and sister dying. She feels like it is completely her fault and her mother didn’t help with that at all. Blaming one child for what another does is not fair. It’s a total shame for any mother to do so. Darcy’s coming back home made more wonderful things happen than she could have ever dreamed possible. This book is so good. It will make you laugh, cry, think, hold your breath, cringe in parts, scream, laugh again and cry lots of tears. It’s so well written and will definitely tug at your heartstrings. It’s one that you won’t want to put down until the end and then you’ll want more. I highly recommend this book to everyone I know who loves reading. I have to thank #NetGalley and #Lake Union publishers for this copy of a wonderful book for my honest review.. It’s another huge 5 stars from me. You can’t go wrong with a Christine Nolfi book.
teachlz 15 days ago
Christine Nolfi, Author of “The Road She Left Behind” has written a thought-provoking, emotional, captivating, and heartwarming novel. The Genres for this novel are Fiction and Women’s Fiction. The timeline for this story is within an eight-year period. The author describes her dramatic characters as complex, complicated, quirky, and dysfunctional. Darcy Goodridge is finally coming back home after being on the road and in different places for the last eight years. Darcy had been running away after the deaths of her sister and her father. The dysfunctional family dynamics and deep dark secrets were also part of Darcy’s motivation to stay away from home. Now an emergency phone call about Emerson, Darcy’s young nephew has her coming home. Is it true that there’s no place like home? Darcy is left with an emotional mess to deal with, and other problems. Christine Nolfi has written a story that had me chuckling a few times and also tearful. ( Be warned there are some Kleenex moments) I would highly recommend this insightful and thought-provoking novel. I appreciate that the author discusses the importance, of family, friendship, forgiveness, second-chances, communication, love and hope.
LGHudson 14 hours ago
MAGNETIC! Christine Nolfi’s latest novel, THE ROAD SHE LEFT BEHIND, is MAGNETIC! Magnets both attract and repel and that is exactly what happens in between the characters in THE ROAD SHE LEFT BEHIND. This is an excellent book that will keep your attention from beginning to end! This may be Nolfi’s best novel to date! Her characters are complex, her story is realistic and as a reader, you will become entangled in all of it! Three women from two different families have been friends for a lifetime. Their friendship should have continued this way instead of one person barely speaking to the one of the others, two badly broken hearts and one person hating everyone else. Attracting and Repelling - Love and Hate. All of this from deeply buried dark secrets that have changed the course of all their lives. Can they possibly restore all the broken pieces of their hearts, lives and relationships? What would it take to make them WANT to make a change? I was provided an ARC of this book by Lake Union Publishers and NetGalley. The opinions expressed here are completely my own and without influence.
LlamaJen 2 days ago
Enjoyed the book! Thank goodness for Samson or Darcy would still be splitting her lunch in half every day and moving to a different town every year for the rest of her life. Rosalind was an awful mother and was simply cruel to her daughter. Actually, Rosalind was mean to pretty much everyone she met. I'm not sure how she could blame Darcy for everything. She even blamed Darcy for Elizabeth getting pregnant. I hate to say it, but I found Emerson completely annoying. I couldn't believe Darcy was going to let an eight year old dictate who she was allowed to date or fall in love with. I couldn't wait to find out what happened to Darcy's dad and sister. I thought there was going to be some huge mystery behind their deaths, especially since Darcy was to blame according to her mom. What happened to them was awful and it wasn't what I was expecting. Thankfully Darcy, Elizabeth and eventually Emerson had Latrice when they were growing up. She pretty much raised them and let them know that they were loved. Tippi was quite the character. She always dressed in black, played poker and had many boyfriends. Definitely recommend the book. I enjoyed the story and the writing style. I loved the cover of the book. I look forward to reading more books by the author. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Lake Union Publishing through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Shelley-S-Reviewer 7 days ago
This was a welcome break from my usual steady diet of thrillers. I've read and enjoyed previous books by Christine Nolfi, but I think this is the best one she's ever written. The Road She Left Behind is a multi-generational story of a mother, a daughter, their nephew/grandson and the decades-old secret that devastated their family. Christine Nolfi knows how to paint a vivid picture featuring engaging characters and her talents were on full display with this novel. The characters were emotionally engaging; I laughed and cried with them and their struggles were very tangible. Parts of this were very sensitive and personal, but Ms. Nolfi handled delicate details with respect and did not belittle her characters. I couldn't help but be pulled into Darcy and Rosalind's lives and stayed up late to spend more time with them. All of the characters were richly imagined and detailed and I was very invested in the story which was at turns heartbreaking and joyful. The story is sprawling, and beautiful, and once it got going, it was difficult to step away from the lives of these characters. In the end, this was a book about the bonds we make and how each can either make or break us.
CharlotteLynnsReviews 9 days ago
I am a Christine Nolfi fan. With each book of her that I pick up I know that I will meet some wonderful, fully developed characters that tell a story that pull me right in and won’t let me go until I read the last page. The Road She Left Behind is exactly what I was hoping for. I started the book one morning, became invested in the characters and their story, and was unable to put it down until I finished the last page. Darcy left her home, her family, and everything she knew when she lost her sister and her father. She continued to run from life until she was forced to return home. While I loved that she was returning home, possibly dealing with the reasons that she left in the first place, I was still worried that her mother wouldn’t allow her to heal. Emerson was the reason for the return home and he was wonderful. A cute 8-year-old boy that was more observant than most children, who grew up under the thumb of a grandmother who didn’t know how to show her love, yet he was full of love, life, and understanding. His spunk, his love of life, and his smarts all endeared him to me. I became invested in this little boy and hoped that he would be able to keep his family together. This is a beautiful, family story. It shows how families are not always perfect but they do support each other in tough times. Darcy comes home, works towards mending her relationships with those that she ran from, and manages to find the happiness that she never thought she deserved.
Sheremy2627 9 days ago
The Road She Left Behind is a beautifully told story of complicated family dynamics. A perfect summer read! Darcy left home years ago and never staying in one place long enough to form attachments. When a family emergency calls her home she must face the grief she has been running from. Once again Christine Nolfi creates an endearing cast of characters, including Darcy’s harsh/overbearing mother, her cheeky nephew and her childhood best friend. As the story unfolds Darcy uncovers some long kept family secrets and finds a stronger version of herself who is worthy of love.
DianeD54 10 days ago
This is another wonderful book written by Christine Nolfi that deals with some complicated family dynamics and shows how important love is in pulling things back together in order to move forward. The characters all seem so real and you are pulled into the story right to the end.
Lsmdtb5 10 days ago
Christine Nolfi made me fall in love with this book and all of its characters. Darcy held everything inside from the minute her family tragedy happened. 8 years later she goes home and it all starts to come open. I think Samson might have been my favorite character. So good hearted and kind. Just what the world needs more of.
Annette5151 10 days ago
A really good story about family and all the heartache and complications that come along with them. Another really good book by this author. Thank you to Netgalley, publisher and author for the early copy! Definitely recommend!!
Avon ByAgnes 11 days ago
I have never read any books by this author but am glad I got this one because I am now adding her to my list of authors. I love the story about family because it is something I believe in. When Darcy leaves home after her sister and father die in an accident she feels responsible for, things were never the same. She was supposed to take care of her sister's son, Emerson, but instead that responsibility fell to her mother. When Emerson runs away, Darcy returns home to help find him and becomes entangled in the family secrets, and a love lost 8 years before. This book kept me turning the page and was a great read. It wont be released until June 11 so thanks to #netgalley I received an ARC. I will definitely be reading more of Nolfi's books.
MKF 15 days ago
Can you go home again? Can you survive secrets and lies and maybe just maybe come through it ok? Can you also have a second chance at romance? These are the questions Nolfi has posed for Darcy, who took off when her father and sister were killed in a tragic accident she feels responsible for. Even more, what will her relationship be with Emerson, her sister's son? There's a lot of tangled family issues here but Darcy works through them. She also finds herself still interested in Michael, who still cares about her. Thanks to net galley for the ARC. This is nicely plotted and well written- a good read.
Anonymous 15 days ago
“Crushed by guilt over the car accident that killed her father and sister, and torn apart by her mother’s resentment, Darcy Goodridge fled her family estate eight years ago and hasn’t looked back. Now an unexpected phone call threatens to upend what little serenity she’s found. Her nephew, Emerson, who was just a baby when his mother died, has gone missing. Darcy must return home and face her past in order to save him.” Contemporary women’s fiction is a genre that I haven’t been into for a long time, I normally reach for all the mysteries and thrillers. However, something about this synopsis grabbed me and so, I jumped, and I am so happy that I did. The one thing that was not revealed by the synopsis was the relationships in this book that turn you into a sideline cheerleader, hoping that everything plays out just right for everyone. This book also made me feel all the emotions. I was on the edge of my seat in parts, sad in others, elated in others and feeling the love still in other parts. I also found myself giggling out loud on a regular basis thanks to a certain couple of characters who added so much flavor and color to this book. If I had one thing that hung me up from giving 5 stars, it would be that I found it jumped in some places. Never enough for me to get lost, but enough for me to sort of stumble and go “oh, we’re talking about what now?” Overall, this book was a great, light read and I would definitely look for this author again!