Sneak Peek expires in one week.

Sneak Peek expires in one week.


CHAPTER ONE: The Last Tug On A String

I half-jogged, half-walked to catch up with my seventeen-year-old daughter, Robyn, at Chicago O’Hare Airport and all I could think about was how a person can disappear from their own life and not even know it was happening. The life part goes on, but you’ve slipped to the curb and despite waving like a maniac shouting “But Wait!”—admittedly not the strongest shout-out to get life to slow its roll—life, in my experience waits for no man, or motherless fourth-grade girl, pregnant woman or single moM trying her darnedest to hold off catastrophe.

“Robyn!” I called out, not alarmingly so, not a 911 call, no, just loud enough to alert her. To point out that she was moving too fast for me. “Rob, hold up,” I said, using her nickname to soften the parental call out. There was no indication that she heard me. In her mind, there was zero cause for alarm, I always caught up. 

If my daughter, my one and only, rushing as if she’d flown to New York alone a million times before, could hear my thinking, she’d roll her eyes and say, “Mom. So dramatic. Everything is fine.” Of course, she’d say that because Robyn didn’t know how un-fine life could get. She had me, Poppy Lively, keeping her life as stress-free as possible. When she organized a Quidditch team slash Harry Potter book club in her sophomore year, I created the reading schedule, found a field, made the brooms, and called the other mothers—who did the same for their kids.

Unlike my own mother who’d voluntarily left me when I was nine, I’d use every James Bond tool in my long and storied career of being a woman before I’d ever vanish, purposefully or accidentally from my daughter Robyn’s life. This was the As God Is My Witness – fist-shaking to the heavens-thought I had seconds before dodging a massive golf-cart-like vehicle transporting an ancient, gasping man who might not live to see his departure gate. The driver zigged while I zagged and I dropped my Hot Venti Latte on my white jeans. 

“No! Oh no,” I said trying to minimize the trajectory of the drink, and reduce the collateral damage. “Excuse you!” I shouted as the people-mover scooted away. “How did he not see me?” I said to other travellers giving me a wide berth as if my clumsiness was contagious. 

Shhhh…..I can’t show you anything else….but I hope you liked that peek. 

xo Ann


Thanks to Ben White for the photo.



  1. Denise on June 1, 2022 at 10:28 am

    Ooh, I want more.

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 2:52 pm

      I”M so glad you do!! Soon, I promise. Not soon enough for me. 🙂

  2. Phyllis Jones Pisanelli on June 1, 2022 at 1:00 pm

    Ann Garvin! I’m intrigued by this sneak peak. If you need or looking for reviewers, I would like to volunteer. I’ve been reading some of your blogs and enjoy your writing. Check out my review blog and let me know!

    Thank you!

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 2:43 pm

      Thank you Phyllis. I’m not quite ready for that but I so appreciate you offer. I’d love to hear your thoughts when the time comes.

  3. Linda Smith on June 1, 2022 at 1:10 pm

    As a Mom, there’s so much ‘momness’ in this that I can relate to. Anxious to get to know these people better!

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 2:42 pm

      There is so much momness! I’m moving forward — this book was so fun to write. I’m excited to see how the world receives it. I’m so lucky to have this job. Thanks for being here, next to me.

  4. Lorraine on June 1, 2022 at 2:11 pm

    Ann — A winner, already! I love your “voice.” Missed your voice — the one I fell in love with because of I Thought You Said This Would Work. We so need your authentic voice, writing for us and about us — like you said: “I write for you and me.”

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 2:41 pm

      Thank you!! Loraine, I hope this book is as well-received as I THOUGHT YOU SAID THIS WOULD WORK. There is still work to do. Thank you so much for being here to read my words about you and me. 🙂

  5. Laurie Buchanan on June 1, 2022 at 2:26 pm

    Oh, Ann — you’ve bloody gone and done it again. BRILLIANT!

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 2:39 pm

      You are the best hype girl (woman) person, on the planet. Thank you so very much. I hope the rest works.
      Thank you for being in my corner.

  6. CathyS on June 1, 2022 at 2:31 pm

    We’re supposed to wait a year to read more? I’d continue now if I could. Sigh.

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 2:36 pm

      Oh Cathy, music to my ears. I’ll see if I can post more in upcoming emails. I have to ask my publisher if that’s ok.
      I’m so happy to hear you’d like to read more though. Thank you for that!!

  7. Lori Pohlman on June 1, 2022 at 3:12 pm

    Ann, reading this short excerpt, I am reminded of the sparkling humor and warm personality you displayed during a talk you gave in Madison that I attended. You draw your readers in and make us feel like old friends! Congratulations on your writing success!

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 6:16 pm

      I’m so glad you feel that way. I feel like my readers are friends, they just read really long letters 🙂

  8. Nancy on June 1, 2022 at 4:22 pm

    Can’t wait to read this!

    • Ann Garvin on June 1, 2022 at 6:15 pm

      Thanks!! I’m working hard on it!!

  9. Vinaya wall on June 1, 2022 at 6:31 pm

    OMG GIRL you’ve gone and done it again!! Reading this sneak has brought eager joy to my heart and a reminder that there is hope !! Thank you so much for flowing your creative juices! ❤️❤️❤️❤️ Vinny

    • Ann Garvin on June 2, 2022 at 1:13 pm

      I’m so glad you think so!! Lots of work to do on this book but I’m getting there!!

  10. Doris Biddix on June 2, 2022 at 1:13 am

    Oh my…I’m hooked!! What a fabulous teaser…let me know when I can preorder!! Sounds marvelous!!!

    • Ann Garvin on June 2, 2022 at 1:12 pm

      Your family and friends must think of you as a daily ray of sunshine. xoxox

  11. Diana Taylor on June 2, 2022 at 5:48 pm

    I Love to come sit by you, especially when we’re talking about a new book you’re working on. Thanks for the sneak peak, I too want more sooner. But like a great wine, it takes time. So we’ll wait because the outcome will be absolutely marvelous!!

  12. Sandra Margolese on July 21, 2022 at 11:15 am

    I love it! Your voice sparkles, as always, and I can’t wait to read the whole book. And, Poppy Lively, fantastic name. Thanks for sharing this!

    • Ann Garvin on July 21, 2022 at 4:38 pm

      You are such a love.

  13. Susan McCorkindale on February 8, 2023 at 5:44 pm

    I can’t wait for this! I absolutely loved “I Thought You Said This Would Work.”

    • Ann Garvin on February 8, 2023 at 6:22 pm

      Thank you!! I hope you love this one too. It was kind of a blast to write.
      Thanks for being here Susan!!

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