The Chance You Won’t Return

Finished The Chance You Won’t Return by Annie Cardi.  I received a copy from the publisher for review.

Summary (from Goodreads):

When your mom thinks she’s Amelia Earhart, navigating high school, first love, and family secrets is like flying solo without a map.

Driver’s ed and a first crush should be what Alex Winchester is stressed out about in high school – and she is. But what’s really on her mind is her mother. Why is she dressing in Dad’s baggy khaki pants with a silk scarf around her neck? What is she planning when she pores over maps in the middle of the night? When did she stop being Mom and start being Amelia Earhart? Alex tries to keep her budding love life apart from the growing disaster at home as her mother sinks further into her delusions. But there are those nights, when everyone else is asleep, when it’s easier to confide in Amelia than it ever was to Mom. Now, as Amelia’s flight plans become more intense, Alex is increasingly worried that Amelia is planning her final flight – the flight from which she never returns. What could possibly be driving Mom’s delusions, and how far will they take her?”

I really enjoyed this story.  I especially loved Alex.  Alex is an incredibly realistic heroine.  She is selfish and embarrassed about her mom’s mental problems and close to her brother and sister but also resentful at having to spend so much time taking care of them. I love that she’s a regular teenager and not a perfect person.

And I love that she tries so hard to spend time with her mom and even plays along with everything, as much as she can.  She fails a lot, but she keeps trying.  (And I love that, as someone who also fails a lot and also keeps trying.)

I found everything about this book intriguing.  There is a history of depression in my family, but I’ve never had any experience with delusions and things like this.  I love how it’s presented very matter-of-factly.  I mean yes, Alex is embarrassed by her mom, but it’s never like a freak show, for lack of a better term.



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