When Marguerite Daigle, a “seventh generation lapsed Louisiana Catholic,” develops a drinking problem, her eight-year-old daughter Penny runs wild and her teenage daughter Mahalia flees into the arms of fanatical right-to-lifer Isabel Flood, who provides the structure Mahalia has been craving.
With a tension that builds from the first page, I Loved You All is a lyrical, funny, and moving portrait of family life and of the peculiarly American politics of abortion rights.
“Sharp has the born novelist’s gift of breathing life into her characters . . . Sharp’s gifts are enormous.” –Craig Seligman, The New York Times Book Review
“Sharp brilliantly navigates the political and religious waters that swirl around the pro-life movement.” —Publishers Weekly
“[Sharp’s] characters are intriguing down to the last man, woman and child. This story is a book-discussion group’s dream.” —The Seattle Times
“Even the minor characters seem to get up and step off the page . . . I loved this book . . . Sharp’s gifts are enormous.” –Craig Seligman, The New York Times Book Review
“[T]his beautifully written story, full of wry observations about human nature and the abortion debate, will resonate with all those who have ever laughed or cried at their own family’s absurdities. Bottom line — sharp writing.” –Olivia Abel, People magazine
“What memorable characters Paula Sharp creates in I Loved You All and what a great story she tells. Sharp writes with splendid humor and intelligence, nowhere more so than in dealing with the tricky right to life debate. This is a thoroughly enjoyable book.” –Margot Livesey, author of The Missing World
“Paula Sharp borrows a line from Gwendolyn Brooks’ bittersweet and unblinking abortion poem called “the mother” for the title of her new novel. In I Loved You All, Sharp promptly repays the loan and adds substantial interest . . . The characters are intriguing down to the last man, woman and child. There is pathos, sly wit and dramatic surprise . . . This story is a book-discussion group’s dream.” –Barbara Lloyd McMichael, The Seattle Times
“Without taking sides or descending into cliché, Sharp brilliantly navigates the political and religious waters that swirl around the pro-life movement . . . The narrative moves swiftly from conflict to conflict, buoyed by Sharp’s perfect timing and occasionally ecstatic prose.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Barely three pages into Paula Sharp’s second novel, the realization crept in: that I might be holding the next Oprah book in my hands, and that to my horror I was unabashedly enjoying it . . . Sharp manages to construct deep characters and complex relations with just a few sentences — the sign of a natural storyteller.” –Ed Neuert, Salon.com
” . . . wonderfully inventive. The hyperactive but observant Penny proves a rich and innocently ironic voice.” –Stephen Amidon, USA Today
“Sharp succeeds where other novelists have failed. The characters are vivid, and Sharp’s writing is lyrical and piercing throughout . . . I Loved You All is a stunning accomplishment . . . One can only wonder what she’ll do to surpass this.” –Amy C. Rea, Literal Mind Fiction Book Review
“Memorable . . . Sharp manages to treat a controversial subject with appropriate depth without letting I Loved You All become a political tract, and her powers of description keep the story going until its dramatic conclusion.” –Lisa Pitnik, Redbook
“A touching depiction of modern families and the dangers and pitfalls they face, I Loved You All is both compelling and haunting, while Sharp’s writing is witty, fresh, and-at times — dizzyingly brilliant . . . I Loved You All is a rare compilation of compelling plot and fabulous characters who draw readers in from the first page and keep them clinging to every written word.” –Heather Grimshaw, Bookreporter.com
“Sharp does a splendid job of creating characters who are recognizable and original.” -Susan Hall,Baiduf, The Charlotte Observer
“Paula Sharp has crafted a fine book, unpredictable and sensitively written.” –Jennifer Smith, The Madison Isthmus
“[T]he book is an unqualified success. Each of Sharp’s characters is a carefully drawn, three-dimensional individual full of passions and faults . . . Sharp succeeds in creating characters with whom we may feet a sense of connection that reaches beyond our views about any specific issue.” –Rob Cline, Iowa City ICON
“Well worth reading . . . Recommended for all public libraries.” —Library Journal
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