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Aftercare Instructions | April 11, 2018

By Bonnie Pipkin (Flatiron Books)

In the 17 years she has been alive, Genesis has not had it easy. Her life was derailed when her father, who was an actor and playwright, died of a heroin overdose and her mother has been unable to pull herself together following his death. Genesis finds herself caring for her mother and managing the aftermath while also working through her own grief. The one person she finds refuge in is her boyfriend Peter. He has always been there for her, until they find out that Genesis has become unexpectedly pregnant and a scheduled appointment at Planned Parenthood leaves her all alone with no support.

The book is brilliantly broken up into two parts that weave throughout. Readers will find themselves reading a script of how Genesis and Peter met and fell in love and then the story jumps to the present with a first person narrative by Genesis where she recounts the days that followed the planned parenthood visit. The chapters are appropriately named by the aftercare instructions they gave Genesis after she left such as You may Experience a Wide Range of Emotions and Please Don’t Hesitate to Call with Any Questions.

The relationships with not only Peter, but her mother, sister, best friend and a new hookup are packed with raw emotion and keep the reader wanting to know how they will ultimately play out.  This is a story about how when you think everything around you is completely falling apart, life surprises you and ultimately points you in the right direction to truly find yourself. And how the worst moments of your life end up being the ones that are the most monumental and change everything forever.

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