Book Review & Author Interview - Heads or Tails by Leslie A. Gordon

Heads or Tails
Author: Leslie A. Gordon
Publisher: 


Book Blurb:
“Take my baby.”
Hillary can’t believe the words her best friend Margot just uttered. Deeply committed to her devoutly childless marriage, Hillary doesn’t know the first thing about infants – and has zero interest in learning. But Margot’s post-partum depression has reached a dangerous peak. With the baby a sperm donor production and Margot’s mother Jean suffering from Parkinson’s, there’s no one else. And for reasons nobody knows, Hillary owes both Margot and Jean.
Suddenly, Hillary is forced to bring the baby from Manhattan to San Francisco, where she works as general contractor for the city’s hottest restoration company. Right away, the baby’s arrival exposes hairline cracks in Hillary’s marriage to Jesse and stirs up Hillary’s latent resentment towards her parents, who’d been too overcome with grief to ever parent her properly. With the wise counsel of Sarah, her closest friend in San Francisco, and the support of her business partner Frank, Hillary is shocked to discover that she’s somehow able to keep Margot’s daughter alive. Before long, Hillary finds herself doing all kinds of things she vowed never to do, including things with her handsome and mysterious neighbor Abe. And then the question arises: should this arrangement become permanent?
HEADS OR TAILS is a commercial women’s fiction novel that will appeal to fans of Jodi Picoult, Emily Giffin and Jennifer Weiner. With a fresh premise, the story explores themes of friendship and loyalty and what happens when your core identity is challenged.

Buy the Book:
Amazon

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My Review:

Hillary is definitely in over her head at the start of this book.  She goes from never wanting kids and being completely content with that to a baby that isn't hers thrown into her and her husbands happy, calm life.  The fact that she even took the baby is such a nice act, especially considering how uncomfortable and out of her element she is.

Watching how this baby can turn a peaceful life into turmoil was actually refreshing, because that's what babies do.  Whether you had them naturally, adopted them or acquired them in a crazy way like Hilary did, babies can turn the most stable house into what feels like a nut house at times.

Seeing Hilary and her husband change throughout the story was nice.  Their characters grew in ways even the characters didn't expect.  Just another thing babies do, teach you things about yourself you didn't even know you wanted to know, or that you were capable of.

One of my favorite parts, 'Sayings Sarah' one of Hillary's friends.  She has these off the wall sayings that I thought were funny and creative.  I may even have to borrow a couple for my own life. lol

I gave this book: 4 Stars

The book got four stars from me because I enjoyed it.  If you like books about children and the emotions that go with that, you'll love this book.  Leslie really captured the emotions and the character growth that I think this book needed.  I felt for all the characters, Hillary, Jesse, Margot and Jean.  This is a situation that no one wants to go through but way to many people have experienced it.  I really enjoyed reading this, it was a quick read and quite enjoyable.

What I Loved:
-The true emotion within the story.  I wanted to keep reading after it had finished to see what else might be in store for Hillary and Jesse.
-Hillary is SUCH a great friend, that's awesome that her character is like that, as well as Jesse being so much more complex that I expected in the beginning of the book.
-The character growth!  I loved watching Hillary fall in love with baby GiGi, because that's real life, you can't not love a baby.

What I didn't Love:
-I wanted a bit more from Hillary in the end.  I don't know what exactly but I feel like maybe the book was set up for a sequel?  Which would be awesome.
-I didn't love Margot, I realize she was sick but I felt like she was too casual in the end of the story.  But that's just me.

Overall I loved this quick, fun read that made me want to continue following Hillary and Jesse's life and see what other changes were to come.
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About the Author:
Leslie A. Gordon

A “recovering” lawyer, Leslie A. Gordon is a longtime legal affairs journalist.  She has wanted to be a novelist since she was eight.  She lives, works and knits in San Francisco with her husband, children and dogs.

To learn more, visit her at:

https://leslieagordon.wordpress.com
Twitter

I got the chance to Interview with Leslie A. Gordon recently:


1. What made you want to write a book?
I love good stories. Both CHEER and my new book HEADS OR TAILS were sparked by a friend offhandedly saying something that made sirens go off in my head. Both times, I thought, “That would make a GREAT novel.”


2. What did you (or do you) want to be when you grow up?
I have wanted to be a novelist since I was about eight. You know that saying "A writer is a reader moved to emulation"? That was me. I just loved stories so much and I wanted to try to move people the way other peoples' books moved me. Somehow, though, I ended up taking a more traditional career path and went into law instead, which was absolutely the wrong profession for me. A few years later, I went back to school and got a master’s in journalism, which was much more in line with my childhood writing aspirations. Today, I am a freelance legal affairs journalist and I write novels on the side.


3.  Are any of your characters based off of people you personally know and what made you choose them?
Absolutely! In HEADS OR TAILS, one of the protagonist’s best friends is Sarah, who is always using idioms and sayings. (The protagonist’s husband calls her “Sayings Sarah.”) She says things like, “No need to use a sledgehammer to crack a nut.” I have a friend who uses those kinds of expressions all the time. I find it charming and wanted to incorporate it into a book somehow. It fit this character perfectly.


4.  How did your story come to you?
A friend of mine asked me to watch her kids one afternoon because she had to drop everything to fly to New York to help her dear friend, a single mother who was struggling with post-partum depression. When she returned home, I asked how her friend was. She described a sad situation and told me that her friend had said, “Take my baby.” Of course, my friend did not take her baby, but the novelist in me thought, “What if…”


5.  Has the 'becoming an author' experience been what you had expected?  And why?
Writing novels is hard work! There are so many decisions. What do you describe? What do you leave out? Where does the story start? What should happen next? It’s very challenging but when it goes well, it’s exhilarating. And there’s nothing better than hearing from a reader who was surprised by or moved by a story that you created. 


6.  If you could give an aspiring author 1 piece of advice what would it be?
It’s very tempting to circle around writing – to take writing classes, to read books about writing. So my advice is to quit dancing around the idea of writing a book and sit down and write it. That said, I do recommend you read Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird. She suggests giving yourself short assignments (every scene in HEADS OR TAILS began as a short assignment I gave myself) and allowing yourself to write a bad first draft. That’s how novels get written. 
(love this advice!  I'm gonna go buy Lamott's book!)

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Thank you so much for allowing me to read and review your book.

Until Next Time-
Aimee

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