You Are My Only

You Are My Only

by Beth Kephart

Hardcover

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781606842720
Publisher: EgmontUSA
Publication date: 10/25/2011
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 5.66(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.96(d)
Lexile: 800L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 Years

About the Author

Beth Kephart is the author of thirteen books, including the National Book Award finalist A Slant of SunUndercoverThe Heart Is Not a Size and Dangerous Neighbors. Kephart is a winner of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fiction grant, a National Endowment for the Arts grant, and a Pew Fellowships in the Arts grant, among other honors. You can visit her online at www.beth-kephart.blogspot.com.

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You Are My Only 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 31 reviews.
KSowa More than 1 year ago
In the few seconds it took for Emmy to get a blanket, her baby was taken. Young and in a bad marriage, Baby was the only thing good in Emmy's life. Fourteen ears later, the baby that was taken from Emmy is living with the woman she believes is her mother. When her desire to know who she is and why she has to always stay away from The No Good becomes too strong, she decides to find out where she really belongs. This book was heartbreaking and emotional. The story is told by Emmy in the days and weeks after Baby is taken, and then fast forwards fourteen years later, in alternating chapters, when Sophie (Baby) starts to figure out that there is more to her story than her "mother" is telling her. Beth Kephart writes about Emmy's panic with such force that your heart stays in your throat and you feel her unraveling with every minute that passes. Sophie's story is just as emotional. Her life is carefully constructed and her days filled with learning, but as she starts asking herself more and more questions, that insular world starts to open up. She meets a boy next door who is living with his two aunts and their friendship gives her the strength to discover who she is. The author very skillfully pulls you into Sophie's isolated existence and boxes you in right along with her. I felt every word of this book. It was full of heartbreak and desperation. Emmy's determination to find Baby was so real that it took my breath away. The best part about this book was that I wasn't sure if the ending was really happy or not. Both voices were written so beautifully that I could not really tell you what I wanted for Sophie, in the end. That greyness within a situation that seems black and white kept me awake long after I finished the book. You are really missing out if you don't take the opportunity to read this. I gave it 5 stars. I received this book as a galley from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
OtotheD More than 1 year ago
Twenty-year-old Emmy Rane married young and had a baby soon after. Trapped in a dull, meaningless world, her baby girl is her only bright spot. One summer day, Emmy leaves her daughter unattended in her swing for just a few minutes while she runs inside to grab a blanket. When she returns, her daughter is gone, the only trace of her the yellow sock left on the ground. Desperate to find her daughter, Emmy runs off in the middle of the night wandering aimlessly around town. Her search takes her to the train station where she is taken into custody. When her husband turns on her and has her taken to the psych ward it seems all hope of ever finding her baby is lost. Fourteen-year-old Sophie lives a reclusive life with her mother. She has been shuffled around her entire life, constantly on the run from what her mother calls "The No Good". When Sophie befriends Joey, the neighbor boy, and his two loving aunts, she is determined to make sure that she and her mother stay put. The only problem is that by contacting Joey from her attic, Sophie is breaking the rules. She is home schooled, is to stay inside at all times, and must never make contact with anyone outside their home. If her mother finds out she will pick them up and leave again, which is the last thing Sophie wants. You are my Only is told from both Sophie and Emmy's viewpoints in alternating chapters. I'm ashamed to admit that I've never read anything by Ms. Kephart before. I am definitely a fan. Though not surprising, the story was engaging, fast-paced and heart-breaking without being too melodramatic. The characters were all very well-drawn and the prose soars. I especially loved how Ms. Kephart played with language. It was the way she used the language that made the story so engaging and the characters feel so real. The last time I felt this way was when I read Emma Donohue's Room. I highly recommend this one. (Review based on an Advanced Reader's Copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley)
Florinda on LibraryThing 8 months ago
I¿ve been intrigued by the plot of Beth Kephart¿s newest novel, You Are My Only, ever since I first heard about it; the young-mother angle was what particularly caught my attention, as I was also married at nineteen and a mother by twenty. Thankfully, my story and Emmy Rane¿s don¿t have much more in common than that.This isn¿t just Emmy¿s story, however; it¿s also that of fourteen-year-old Sophie Marks, whose overly-sheltering mother Cheryl has moved the two of them from one place to another--always trying to stay ahead of what she calls ¿the No Good¿--for most of Sophie¿s life, home-schooling and keeping her away from the neighbors. But Cheryl has to go to work, and Sophie¿s old enough to be getting restless, which leads her across the alley to meet Joey Rudd, his two aunts, and their big loud dog, Harvey.Kephart follows Emmy and Sophie through alternating, parallel narratives. Emmy¿s efforts to find her missing Baby cause her physical injury and sufficient mental and emotional anguish to be confined to a state hospital. Sophie¿s developing relationship with Joey¿s family causes her to see herself differently and to chafe against her own confinement, facing questions she hasn¿t really thought about before and finding answers that she she never imagined.There¿s suspense in this novel, but it doesn¿t come from figuring out how Emmy¿s and Sophie¿s stories are connected; any reader who doesn¿t surmise that connection fairly quickly isn¿t paying attention, and Beth Kephart¿s novels both require and reward attention. While they¿re written primarily for a young-adult audience, they¿re ideal ¿crossover¿ books for the adult who doesn¿t usually read YA; unlike a lot of current YA fiction, they¿re firmly rooted in the real world and feature emotionally complex characters. Kephart¿s teens have always been strikingly real, but in Emmy, she¿s created an adult protagonist who is just as fully realized. You Are My Only explores attachment from a number of perspectives; the fierce protectiveness of mother love is a primary theme (one that I think applies to Cheryl as well as to Emmy), with the unconventional family across the alley--two elderly lesbian aunts and the teenage nephew they are raising--considered in counterpoint. These themes largely emerge between the lines. Kephart¿s writing is poetic and evocative, and as I said, it rewards attention paid to it; one of her great strengths is that she can tell a powerful story without hammering all the points home. And this is a powerful, memorable story, ambitious in structure and emotionally affecting. I believe You Are My Only is Beth Kephart's best work yet and would encourage anyone who hasn¿t yet discovered her work to start right here.
booktwirps on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Twenty-year-old Emmy Rane married young and had a baby soon after. Trapped in a dull, meaningless world, her baby girl is her only bright spot. One summer day, Emmy leaves her daughter unattended in her swing for just a few minutes while she runs inside to grab a blanket. When she returns, her daughter is gone, the only trace of her the yellow sock left on the ground. Desperate to find her daughter, Emmy runs off in the middle of the night wandering aimlessly around town. Her search takes her to the train station where she is taken into custody. When her husband turns on her and has her taken to the psych ward it seems all hope of ever finding her baby is lost.Fourteen-year-old Sophie lives a reclusive life with her mother. She has been shuffled around her entire life, constantly on the run from what her mother calls "The No Good". When Sophie befriends Joey, the neighbor boy, and his two loving aunts, she is determined to make sure that she and her mother stay put. The only problem is that by contacting Joey from her attic, Sophie is breaking the rules. She is home schooled, is to stay inside at all times, and must never make contact with anyone outside their home. If her mother finds out she will pick them up and leave again, which is the last thing Sophie wants.You are my Only is told from both Sophie and Emmy's viewpoints in alternating chapters. I'm ashamed to admit that I've never read anything by Ms. Kephart before. I am definitely a fan. Though not surprising, the story was engaging, fast-paced and heart-breaking without being too melodramatic. The characters were all very well-drawn and the prose soars. I especially loved how Ms. Kephart played with language. It was the way she used the language that made the story so engaging and the characters feel so real. The last time I felt this way was when I read Emma Donohue's Room. I highly recommend this one.(Review based on an Advanced Reader's Copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley)
james7163 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Thanks to NetGalley.com and Publisher Egmont USA for the opportunity to read this book prior to its publication.A very well told and touching story written by Beth Kephart about Emmy, a young mother who one day has her baby stolen from her and Sophie, a young teen forced to live as a recluse on the run with her mother. The story alternates between the two characters, Emmy¿s quest to find her baby and Sophie¿s slow discovery of life outside her home and away from her mom, and how the two are connected. Good character development and will be a page turner for young adult readers. I felt the ending was a bit rushed and it would have been nice if it had expanded just a bit. Otherwise, a very good read.
showmegirl on LibraryThing 8 months ago
You Are My Only by Beth KephartRating: 2.5 starsThis was a very interesting read, so I am not sure exactly how to review it.The summary of the book combined with the intriguing cover pulled me in instantly. This is my first experience with this author and my first impression was that the book reads much like a screenplay. The descriptive wording is quite poetic but overly used to the point of making it a chore to read. Though the storyline was strong enough to stand on its own, the writing style seems very disjointed and confusing at times. I like my stories to flow a little smoother than this one did.That said; if this story was to be released theatrically, it would definitely spark my interest. I think the nature of the writing would translate well visually.
KaryW on LibraryThing 8 months ago
First off, thank you to netgalley.com and EgmontUSA publishing for the chance to read an advanced e-copy of this book!This book was told from two alternating points-of-view: Sophie, a 14 year old girl who is homeschooled and forced to live a somewhat reclusive life with her mother, moving frequently to escape the "No Good", and Emmy, a "simple-minded" 19-year-old mom to her much-adored Baby. In the brief time that Emmy leaves Baby outside to get something out of the house, Baby is taken. Emmy is consumed with grief and fruitless searching efforts, resulting in a mental breakdown. Her husband, who appears to be abusive, has her committed to psychiatric care. But all Emmy wants is to get out and find Baby.Sophie is tired of being kept behind closed doors. While her mother is at work, she develops a secret friendship with her next door neighbors, a young boy named Joey and his aunts Miss Cloris and Miss Helen. Sophie wonders about her mother's past, which she won't talk much about. Miss Cloris encourages her to search for answers. What she finds out will change her life forever...I am going to make a confession first -- this is the very first e-book that I have EVER read! Cool, huh? I will always WAY prefer "real" books, but netgalley is such a cool website! Anyway, I really did enjoy this book. The author uses very poetic language that is just beautiful. I liked the alternating view points too - it made things more interesting. And I was intrigued from beginning to end. A beautiful, emotional and quick read!
BookishDame on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Here's the scoop: This will be the most extraordinary and probably one of the most memorable books you'll read for a long time. I suggest going right away to buy your hard copy, first edition because you'll want it in your personal library. I predict it will be one of the Top Best Books of 2011.It is so masterfully written that you could simply close your eyes and point on any given page, and you'll land at a beautiful turn of phrase or description. This is a book of the heart and soul. This is a book that only an author of the highest quality could write.The characters we learn to love: Emmy Rane, the delicate, damaged young mother whose baby is stolen; Sophie, the baby and teenager whom we come to know and love; Joey, her next door friend and companion-of-the-larger-world; Autumn, Emmy's precious person who helped; the awe-inspiring Aunts; and the man who made a difference... All of these people are believable; they come alive in the hands of Beth Kephart. I know them. I cried with and for them, and I laughed in joy and sorrow with them.The structure of this novel is one I have come to favor in every instance: the back and forth of individuals and their story lines. In "You Are My Only" we see the story from the perspectives of Emmy and Sophie. This kept the book running at such a pace that I held back to savour every page. I was so sad when the book ended. You know the feeling...didn't want it to end. But, it ended just perfectly, as I knew it would have to. The final line was poignant and rang with truth.This is a novel that can't be shared more than I have without giving too much away. This is a story that will so touch your heart and mind that you may want to reread it right after you finish it. I loved the book and recommend it to all of my friends and readers. It is a novel that will leave you somber, however, and I must tell you that; it's not one that you can expect to do other than make you think and hope.5+ stars for this very beautiful book by a genius of a writer.Deborah/TheBookishDame
kaitlin_btts on LibraryThing 8 months ago
I honestly don't understand what so many people loved about this book. I found the whole thing hard to follow.I know Emmy was in a drugged up weird mental state, but I could barely understand anything she ever said or thought. Even from the beginning!Also, Kephart tried to describe everything too much. I couldn't handle how some of the paragraphs of the descriptions of things are Emmy or Sophie just went on and on and on. Towards the end I would skip some paragraphs just to get to the dialogue.Two things that kept me reading this book were the good recommendations I read (and heard) and I wondered what was going to happen to Sophie. I did like Sophie's character. Along with Joey and his aunts. They're another reason I kept reading, I actually liked them.I guess this book just wasn't my cup of tea, which is a bummer. I tried so hard to like it.
ExLibris_Kate on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This book was heartbreaking and emotional. The story is told by Emmy in the days and weeks after Baby is taken, and then fast forwards fourteen years later, in alternating chapters, when Sophie (Baby) starts to figure out that there is more to her story than her "mother" is telling her. Beth Kephart writes about Emmy's panic with such force that your heart stays in your throat and you feel her unraveling with every minute that passes. Sophie's story is just as emotional. Her life is carefully constructed and her days filled with learning, but as she starts asking herself more and more questions, that insular world starts to open up. She meets a boy next door who is living with his two aunts and their friendship gives her the strength to discover who she is. The author very skillfully pulls you into Sophie's isolated existence and boxes you in right along with her. I felt every word of this book. It was full of heartbreak and desperation. Emmy's determination to find Baby was so real that it took my breath away. The best part about this book was that I wasn't sure if the ending was really happy or not. Both voices were written so beautifully that I could not really tell you what I wanted for Sophie, in the end. That greyness within a situation that seems black and white kept me awake long after I finished the book. You are really missing out if you don't take the opportunity to read this. I gave it 5 stars.
nbmars on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Emmy Rane is a young mother whose baby has disappeared. Her cruel and abusive husband Peter, suspecting Emmy herself lost the baby, manages to get Emmy committed to a mental institution. As bleak as it is there, however, there are bright spots: a street person Emmy met while looking for her baby sends her a handmade present (he is the only one who corresponds with her), and her roommate, named Autumn, loves Emmy enough to give her the ultimate gift.In alternate chapters we meet Sophie Marks, a young girl of 14, who is home-schooled and never allowed out of the house. Her mother has moved her around frequently, always claiming the ¿No Good¿ is after them. While her mother goes to work, Sophie gazes longingly out the window wishing she could go outside and feel the sun and be under the blue sky. Her mother says outside is too dangerous, but one day Sophie can no longer resist, and sneaks out to meet her neighbor Joey Rudd, who begins to share his loving family with her.Both young women are imprisoned, and both receive hope and support from the kindness of strangers. It is clear both of them will come together somehow, but for most of the book, we only know that they are each so sorely deprived of love that they gravitate to its promise like moths to a flame.Discussion: There are some wonderful characters in this book, my favorite of whom are Joey¿s two ¿aunts¿ who have a boundless store of wisdom and love to share. But there are some bits in the book that don¿t make sense to me. In the beginning, the police seem totally oblivious to Peter¿s physical threats ¿ made right in their presence! - toward Emmy. In addition, with Kephart I often get the sense that the beauty of words can take precedence over meaning (or at least, the meaning is lost on me). Take this passage, for example:"A room that isn¿t mine. The sound of toss and dream, and sheets like the fried bottom of a pan. At the far end of the room, in a square: sun like it¿s been poured into a glass of milk and swallowed ¿ a blank face in a square space of scratch and rake and air clot.¿I have no idea what that means.Nevertheless, it's a book you won't soon forget.Evaluation: Another lovely and poignant story from an author who is so popular among book bloggers for good reason.
EdGoldberg on LibraryThing 8 months ago
You Are My Only, the latest gem from Beth Kephart, is about family, losing one and gaining one. Sophie is fourteen, home-schooled and alone. Her mother works at the local diner all day, leaving Sophie home and cautioning her to lock the doors and not venture out. She has her home-school assignments, the current one being creating the perfect icosahedron. But there¿s a whole world next door that Sophie sees as she peers out her attic window. She watches Joey, the same age, play catch with his dog, Harvey. She sees his aunts Cloris and Helen, one physically strong and the other weak, lovingly tend to each other and their nephew. Sophie can no longer abide her isolation, and willing to accept the consequences if caught, ventures outside, only to be embraced into the next door family. She partakes of custard and lemonade and readings from Willa Cather, the total opposite of her Spartan, hermit-like life.Conversely, Emmy, not much older than Sophie, puts her infant in the backyard swing and realizes the blanket she wants to lay on is indoors. In the split seconds it takes to run up the thirteen steps to the bedroom and back down those thirteen steps, Baby is kidnapped. She searches and calls out, but to no avail. The police aren¿t successful either. Her abusive husband, Peter, berates her. She follows the railroad tracks trying to find Baby and is on the brink of letting an on-coming train hit her in her grief when she is saved by a wanderer, Arlen. Together they search, with no luck. When Emmy thinks she sees a woman carrying Baby at the train station, she causes a scene. The police arrive and once Emmy is in custody, Peter has her committed. No one will help her, except her roommate Autumn, who plans their escape to find Baby.To tell you any more of the story would be to tell too much, if I haven¿t already done that. In some books, it¿s the story that captures you and in some, it¿s the characters. In You Are My Only, it is that rare combination of story and character. Kephart has created two (almost) separate but equal stories, both intriguing and engrossing. In addition, she has created the perfect characters. I defy anyone not to fall in love with Sophie, Joey and Aunts Cloris and Helen or Emmy and Autumn and even Harvey, the dog. I defy anyone not to hate (maybe intensely dislike) Sophie¿s mother or Peter. As always, Kephart chooses her words with care, and while the language is not as `ethereal¿ as in some of her recent books, her images and descriptions and wording remain essential in understanding the characters and surroundings. There are secrets that need to be unearthed and things to ponder. There are relationships that you are jealous you are not a part of and those you are glad you have not experienced. You can read You Are My Only quickly and enjoy the story or you can read it slowly and savor every word and nuance and description. Either way, you must read Beth Kephart¿s latest addition to Young Adult literature, You Are My Only. More than likely, after you¿ve read it once, you¿ll go back and read it again. I know I will.
Melanie_McCullough on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This one gets a solid 4 out of 5 stars for the writing style alone. I was so envious of Kephart's skill the entire time I was reading that I almost wanted to put it away and spare my ego, but I couldn't. It's too darn good. It wasn't the emotional tear-jerker I was expecting, but it is a beautifully written story told from the alternating point of view of two characters that were incredibly unique even if the premise wasn't. Don't discount this story just because you think it's predictable or something you've read before. It's not. Emmy is a barely-educated teenager when she marries and has a child. Her husband is an abusive jerk who treats her like garbage. The only bright spot in her life is her baby. So when her child is taken from her she loses it and ends up institutionalized. Then there's Sophie. Poor, sheltered Sophie who has spent her entire life moving from place to place, avoiding what her mother calls the No Good. She's not allowed to attend school. She's not even allowed outside. But when she sees a boy her age, Joey, playing in the yard next door she finally ventures out and gets a taste of what life should be like. And through friendship and love she learns to stand up to her mother, and to not just accept her fate. This was one I couldn't put down. It's fast paced, intense, and filled with hope. I kept reading because I had to know if Sophie would escape her sheltered life and find happiness with Joey and if Emmy would ever be reunited with Baby. And because Kephart has a way with words that'll make your heart swell. I'm not sure if this was supposed to be a Young Adult contemporary novel or not. When I requested it from NetGalley it was listed under the Teen section, however I didn't really get a YA feel from it. Amazon recommends it for ages 12+ and there's nothing in it that would keep me from recommending to a younger audience, but I definitely feel this is suited to lovers of mainstream fiction like that of Jodi Picoult.
nlsobon on LibraryThing 8 months ago
From the moment you start ¿You Are My Only¿, you can already assume what will happen, but that doesn¿t stop Kephart for taking you on one heck of an emotional ride. The story is told from alternating view points: Sophia and Emmy.Emmy is a mother desperate to find her baby. Worried that her husband, Paul, blames her for her daughter¿s disappearance, Emmy takes off in search of her baby. The story cuts back and forth ¿ while Emmy searches for her baby, we get a glimpse into Sophie¿s childhood. While it may not seem so horrible at first: she¿s home-schooled, the subjects in which her mother is teaching her are advanced ¿ but as the story unfolds and Sophie begins to spend more time with Joey and his aunts, the truth begins to find its way out.¿You Are My Only¿ is heart-wrenching. It will pull you in and refuse to let you go. As the reader, you will find yourself sympathizing for both Sophie and Emmy, especially Emmy. As their worlds come crumbling down, they must find a way to piece their lives back together again. And in Sophie¿s case, she must learn who she is.It¿s a tragic story that¿ll keep you turning the page, eager to know what happens to Sophie and Emmy. But even while this is a tragic story, it ends on a hopeful note.
summerskris on LibraryThing 8 months ago
You Are My Only is told from the perspective of Emmy fourteen years ago and Sophie from the present day. Emmy has been abused and degraded by her husband, and now she suffers the blame for the disappearance of her baby. She feels the despair of losing the one bright spot in her life. Sophie has been homeschooled all the life, which isn¿t much of a life as she¿s always been on the run from what her mother calls the ¿No Good¿ people. She wants to live a normal, open life.What really stood out to me in this novel is how Beth Kephart captured the emotions of Emmy and Sophie in words and transmitted them to the reader in a stream-of-conscious narrative. I could never entirely imagine being in either narrator¿s place: feeling the horror of losing a baby or having to live my life locked in a house without being able to join kids my own age out in the open. Throughout the novel, I sat in my seat, horrified and anguished at my inability to help the two of them. Beth Kephart has written a beautiful, beautiful story of tragedy, hope, and self-discovery, one that can only be fully appreciated by having read the novel. I will definitely be reading more of Kephart¿s past works, and I will be looking forward to future works from her!
TheLostEntwife on LibraryThing 8 months ago
I¿ll be honest, it took me a good 30 minutes or so of reading to really start getting into this story. The alternating narratives, the thought process of Emmy, the strange events (and you cannot help but know they are connected), took every minute of that time and really got my mind working.Once I got everything straight, I began to see just where the beauty of this book lay. While I understood the outcome early on, this is more the story of getting to that point. That journey is so beautifully written that I could not help but feel as if I was not only acquainted with Emmy and Sophie ¿ but that I was intimately involved with them ¿ like they were sisters. I felt their pain, I felt their fear, and it was, quite frankly, more than a little scary.I understand why this book is getting the buzz it¿s getting in the book blogging community. It¿s a subtle, straight-to-the-heart, story that has left me thinking about it days afterward.
writestuff on LibraryThing 8 months ago
From Nothing to Big Things, I think. From No One to Someone. It¿s a whole wide world out there. ¿ from You Are My Only -Emmy Rane is a mother ¿ first and foremost. She is young, married to a man who is a bully, and has a beautiful baby who is her whole life. So when a moment of inattention results in the disappearance of her child, Emmy¿s life is turned upside down.Sophie is fourteen years old ¿ a captive in her own home, craving human content and a life lived under a blue sky. She lives with a mother who is decidedly odd. Sophie has become used to the sudden changes in her world ¿ uprooting to move to a new place when the ¿No Good¿ threaten her mother¿s carefully constructed world. Then one day through an attic window she meets Joey, the boy next door, and his enthusiastic dog, Harvey. Joey lives with his two aunts, Miss Cloris and Miss Helen, who love him unconditionally. Sophie dares to break the rules and leave her house, entering the world of a family which is not only unconventional, but filled with love and cookies and warm custard.You Are My Only is the story of these two characters, narrated in their alternating points of view. There is never really a mystery as to how they are connected because the story is not about mystery. The story is about mothers and children, nurturing and control, freedom and imprisonment, and that elusive thing in life which brings us happiness. Sophie¿s joy is simple ¿ to feel the sun on her face, to enjoy a cookie warm from the oven, to make a kite which will fly high and free.Higher and higher goes the bright zinging kite, the collars and buttons and seams of its tail, the zippers and puff parts and dainty see-throughs. From far away, I hear Miss Cloris telling me to do as we planned to do, which is to say, let the kite go free. ¿ from You Are My Only -Beth Kephart¿s beautiful new novel is filled with grief and joy and something difficult to define which made me want to re-read it as soon as I had turned the final page. I adored the characters who are lovingly and carefully developed. Emmy and Sophie stole my heart. Miss Cloris and Miss Helen embody all that is wonderful about what motherhood really means. Autumn is a young woman who meets Emmy behind the walls of an institution ¿ she is a wonderful and tragic character whose spirit shines brightly and was one of my favorite characters of the book.She leaped, furious, like a dancer to her bed. She began to hop, the mattress rasping and squeaking beneath her and the room starting to shake and I going dizzy. ¿I do my best thinking up her,¿ she explained, not even a little out of breath, touching her toes when she jumped now, kicking her feet, grabbing at the back of her heels, jumping at a terrible speed, her brow wrinkled, her eyes glazed, her hair slapping her shoulders. ¿ from You Are My Only -Kephart has a way with words ¿ it is one reason I never miss a day without reading her blog posts. With the skill of a poet, she can create an image or a feeling or simply a way of seeing the world which is breathtaking.In case you have not already figured it out ¿ I loved You Are My Only ¿ a book that takes the reader into the darkness and then shows them a way to return to the light. Beautifully written and astonishing, this is a book which I highly recommend for readers of all ages.
the1stdaughter on LibraryThing 8 months ago
In the blink of an eye Emmy¿s world goes from a place of enchanted bliss to one filled by fog and tears. Married to a man who saturates her with his unkindness her only hope is to find the one that has been taken from her, the one who filled her life with meaning. Baby. Nearly fourteen years later Sophie longs to run free of the confined space her mother puts her in for fear of the ¿No Good¿. Little does Sophie know, but beyond her front door and through her attic window await a world that will change her life more than she could have ever imagined.This isn¿t my first experience reading Beth Kephart¿s work and it certainly won¿t be my last. With each book I read of hers I¿m continually astounded at her ability to delve into the very depths of my soul within such a short span of time. Her writing expresses something greater than simply ¿knowing¿ people, Beth understands human nature and who we are at our cores better than any other writer I¿ve read. What¿s even more impressive is that within You Are My Only live characters that couldn¿t possibly be more diverse without becoming unbelievable, yet she¿s able to bring each of them to life in a way that has you breathing the air with them.You Are My Only alternates viewpoints and time periods between Emmy, a mother who has recently had her child kidnapped, and Sophie, a teenage girl who is constantly on the run with her mother. Amazingly, I never felt a disconnect when switching between narratives and in many ways it helped to move the story forward. The age and life circumstance difference between Emmy & Sophie was also incredibly powerful to me personally. Sophie¿s passion and desire for the outside world, for truth and understanding made her a character to cheer for. I felt so protective of Sophie in many ways, but I also felt torn by my feelings for her ¿mother¿. I don¿t want to delve too far into that because it would certainly spoil the story, but suffice it to say I had mixed feelings about her by the end of the book.Though I loved absolutely everything about Sophie¿s character, it was Emmy who kept tugging at my heart. This has quite a bit to do with the fact that I¿m a mother as well, but it¿s even more than that. Emmy¿s constant drive to find Baby and then her subsequent care & concern for Autumn later in the book made her one of my favorite characters ever. Emmy¿s compassion, despite her circumstances brought her to life and to this day have me wondering where she is in the world.Within the pages of You Are My Only live characters that capture you within moments. Each of them from Emmy & Baby to Sophie & Joey to Miss Cloris & Miss Helen all become people you could imagine growing up with or at the very least, wishing you had grown up with. Beth Kephart is an author that knows the human heart and writes it with an eloquence that will have you in love with the words on the page as if they were living breathing beings. My only regret upon closing You Are My Only was that I had to leave behind Emmy and Sophie in their newly discovered freedoms, but thankfully I can still go back to visit them whenever I¿d like. You Are My Only will easily be a favorite among readers, both young and old, and has quickly taken it¿s place on my shelf among my personal favorite reads of all time.My original review was posted at There's A Book.
jacindahinten on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Thank you read-a-thons! I think if it wasn¿t for a read-a-thon I participated in, I may have never actually finished this one. Initially, I was really drawn to reading this one, but once I started reading it, I couldn¿t get into it. I was hoping I would be shocked and crying¿but that wasn¿t in the cards for me.Sophie is the character in the book I wanted to read about. I felt sorry for her. I was rooting for her from the get go. The situation, being abducted that is, without her even knowing it most of her life, was horrible. She was so sheltered. I was so happy when she finally started lying to her ¿mother¿ and ventured next door.Emmy was the character I struggled with. I¿m almost 100 percent positive she was the reason it took me 26 days to read You Are My Only. I couldn¿t connect with her. I felt I should have been able to connect with her more than Sophie because she had her child abducted from her and I have children. The situations after the abduction that Emmy put herself in seemed¿I¿m not sure¿.unbelievable? Forced? Too out there? All I know is that I didn¿t like it. I found her story rather boring and repetitive.The best aspect to the story was Beth Kephart¿s writing style! I¿m curious about the other novels she has written and what she may come up with next. You Are My Only COULD be a heartbreaking story, but it wasn¿t to me personally.
KDH_Reviews More than 1 year ago
When I read the blurb for the book, I just knew that this would be a book that I would enjoy. Instead, this book is nothing like the blurb would lead you to believe. I was incredibly disappointed. While we're lead to believe that this is the story of Sophie's life after finding out that she was kidnapped, that's not the case. That's left for the last few pages. So, what's the majority of the book about? A whole lot of nothing actually. The alternating stories do absolutely nothing to save this book. Sophie's parts are boring. Emmy's parts are confusing (and boring). The whole book just left something to be desired and the only reason I kept reading was in hopes that things would get better. Nope, things just end. No resolution, no confrontation, nothing. After looking forward to reading this book while it sat on my to-read shelf for two years, You Are My Only takes home the most disappointing read of the year. You can read all of my reviews on my blog, KDH Reviews.
libsue More than 1 year ago
Looking through the window to a life that goes on without you - a world you're not allowed to inhabit. The trees green, the snow falls, a dog barks, close enough to touch but out of reach I read the stories of Sophie and Emmy, one beautiful word at a time, savoring the words and images evoked by the poetry Beth Kephart brings to us. Eager to turn the page but yet reluctant to let it go, I read on into the night knowing I needed sleep. How can I turn out the light when Emmy and Sophie yearn for what they can't have? How can I leave them when they are trapped and alone? I am close to the end - forty pages to go and I'm weeping. Why? The beauty of the story, the fate of Emmy and Sophie, but most of all I just don't want this story to end. I want to stay with Emmy and see a reunion too long in the making. Beth Kephart has created characters so real I feel their pain at being torn apart from one another. Feel the love that Emmy has for Baby, the love that Miss Cloris and Miss Helen feel for one another and the fear of being pulled apart. I reluctantly finish the most beautiful book I've read in a very long time, but I joyfully pass it on to the next person on the list. I beseech you to read You Are My Only, and promise you characters and a story that will live with you for a long time to come. To Beth - thank you.
Jenny_Geek More than 1 year ago
First and foremost, the writing was breathtakingly beautiful in this novel. I loved the descriptions really felt like I could picture the scenery and the story. I felt like in the beginning of the book, I was pretty confused. It switches from Sophie, a child who never leaves her home, to Emmy, who loses her Baby and goes out trying to find her. Poor Sophie. She is stuck inside a home all day long without having the ability to speak to anyone but her mother. I was proud of her for venturing out to meet Joey, the neighbor boy, and his two aunts. Emmy's story was just heartbreaking. She loses her Baby and she goes on this journey trying to find her and ends up in the mental hospital. I can't imagine losing a child like that and I really felt horrible for her. At the end of the story, although a lot of questions get answered, but I still felt like I had more. I wanted to know more about Sophie's mom and her life. I wanted to know what happened after it was all over. The ending felt a bit abrupt and I feel like that's why I still have so many questions. Overall an interesting read and one I did enjoy. I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
mel_bWI More than 1 year ago
Beth Kephart has again written a remarkable book. We have read about abducted children in the news and this is the story of one and her rescue. Teens will enjoy, as will adults, the vivid images and characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Book_Sniffers_Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story follows Emmy and Sophie on their journey after the abduction. Emmy ends up at State medical ward for some strange reason I don't know. All she did was stay out all night looking for her missing Baby. To me that seems like a pretty reasonable response to something so devastating. Half of the story follows her while in State and the other half follows Sophie and her life with her "mother". Sophie of course has no idea that she was abducted by this woman that she calls her mother. Sophie abides by her mothers rules of staying in doors at all times and hiding when people come to the door... until she meets Joey. The grammar/slang was a bit hard for me to get used to. I found myself rereading parts of the dialogue to figure out what they were saying. It got a little better towards the end when I got used to it but for a while there I thought I was reading it wrong. That sort of took away from the book for me since it kept pulling me out of the story to try to figure out what was going on. However, I understand why the grammar was the way it was and I thought it was brilliant on the authors part. The story is captivating and I could have read it all in one sitting if I had the time. I really enjoyed reading Sophie's story and how meeting just a few people changed the way she saw things and she started to piece things together. The only thing I didn't care for was the ending. Yes it was predictable but it sort of just leaves you hanging. I got no closure from the ending and if left me wondering, "What happened next?" What happens with Arlen and Joey?