And Then I Found You (Henry)

And Then I Found You
Patti Callahan Henry, 2013
St. Martin's Press
272 pp.
ISBN-13: 9780312610760

Kate Vaughan is no stranger to tough choices. She’s made them before. Now it’s time to do it again.

Kate has a secret, something tucked away in her past. And she’s getting on with her life. Her business is thriving. She has a strong relationship with her family, and a devoted boyfriend whom she wants to love with all her heart. If Kate had ever made a list, Rowan would fill the imagined boxes of a perfect mate. But she wants more than the perfect on paper relationship; she wants a real and imperfect love. That's why, when Kate discovers the small velvet box hidden in Rowan's drawer, she panics.

It always happens this way. Just when Kate thinks she can love, just when she believes she can conquer the fear, she’s filled with dread. And she wants more than anything to make this feeling go away. But how?

When the mistakes have been made and the running is over, it’s time to face the truth. Kate knows this. She understands that a woman can never undo what can never be undone. Yet, for the first time in her life she also knows that she won’t fully love until she confronts those from her past. It’s time to act.

Can she do it? Can she travel to the place where it all began, to the one who shares her secret? Can the lost ever become found?

And Then I Found You gives new life to the phrase “inspired by a true story.” By travelling back to a painful time in her own family’s history, the author explores the limits of courage, and the price of a selfless act. (From the publisher.)

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Author Bio
Where—Philadelphia, PA USA
Education—R.N., Auburn University; M.C.H., Georgia State
Currently—lives in Mountain Brook, Alabama

New York Times bestselling author Patti Callahan Henry has published nine novels: Losing the Moon, Where the River Runs, When Light Breaks, Between the Tides, The Art of Keeping Secrets, Driftwood Summer, The Perfect Love Song, Coming up for Air, and And Then I Found You—her most recent. Hailed as a fresh new voice in southern fiction, Henry has been shortlisted for the Townsend Prize for Fiction, and nominated four different times for the Southeastern Independent Booksellers Novel of the Year. Her work is published in five languages and in audiobook by Brilliance Audio.

Henry has appeared in numerous magazines including Good Housekeeping, skirt!, South, and Southern Living. Two of her novels were Okra Picks and Coming up For Air was selected for the August 2011 Indie Next List. She is a frequent speaker at fundraisers, library events and book festivals. A full time writer, wife, and mother of three—Henry lives in Mountain Brook, Alabama.

Patti Callahan Henry grew up in Philadelphia, the daughter of an Irish minister, and moved south with her family when she was 12 years old. With the idea that being a novelist was “unrealistic,” she set her sights on becoming a pediatric nurse, graduating from Auburn University with a degree in nursing, and from Georgia State with a Master’s degree in Child Health.

She left nursing to raise her first child, Meagan, and not long after having her third child, Rusk, she began writing down the stories that had always been in her head. Henry wrote early in the mornings, before her children woke for the day, but it wasn’t until Meagan, then six, told her mother that she wanted “to be a writer of books” when she grew up, that Henry realized that writing was her own dream as well. She began taking writing classes at Emory University, attending weekend writers’ conferences, and educating herself about the publishing industry, rising at 4:30 AM to write. Her first book, Losing the Moon, was published in 2004. (From the author's website.)

Book Reviews
Henry writes this story with eloquence and beauty. This is her most personal and her most powerful story to date.
Huffington Post

A delicious read featuring all of the elements of love, loss and familial tension.

A fictional work based on real-life events in the life of the author's sister. In the fictional version, Katie falls in love with Jack when she is 13 and makes a promise she will love him forever. He reciprocates.... But when Katie wants to take a job in Arizona..., Jack finds it hard to wait for her return.... By the time Katie realizes she is pregnant with their child, Jack is married to someone else.... Katie decides to give the little girl to an anonymous couple who have been trying to have a child for years.... In the midst of these developments, the daughter they continue to think about and love for 13 years finds them. Lives are rearranged, and cherished dreams are finally realized.... [The author] was inspired to write a novel that explores the emotions and life changes that such a miraculous reunion can bring to a family. A touching story.
Kirkus Reviews

Discussion Questions
1. This novel was inspired by a true story. Is there an event in your life that you think would make a good novel?

2. Katie is so devoted to her work with damaged girls that she postpones her life together with Jack. Do you think that Jack should have been more patient in waiting for her? Or was Katie taking their relationship for granted?

3. Katie hears a lot of "terrible stories" from the girls at The Winsome Wilderness. How did these experiences contribute to her decision to place Luna for adoption?

4. Kate seems to take great comfort in rituals. Have these rituals served a positive purpose in her life—or have they held her back?

5. Do you think Kate and Rowan's relationship would have had a different outcome if she had been able to confide in him about her past?

6. Lida is much more than an employee to Kate, who seems to turn a blind eye to the younger woman's shortcomings. What do you think they offer each other?

7. When he was married, Jack didn't tell his wife about Luna. Do you think that this compromised their marriage?

8. Kate mentions that she "wants to love" Rowan. Can Kate—or anyone make themselves love someone? Can you want to love enough to love?

9. Jack says in one of his letters, "of all of the awful parts of missing their daughter, the non-knowning was the absolute worse." Why did Jack feel this way? Do you agree?

10. In the opening of the novel we see that March 20th is a significant date for Katie Vaughn, and it remains so throughout the remainder of the novel. Is there a date that is deeply significant to you and if so, why?

11. Thirteen-year-old Emily wonders about her "birth parents." Do you know any adopted children and if so, do they often wonder about their birth parents?

12. Emily is deeply loved and has a close family, but still she struggled with feeling wanted. Why do you think this is?

13. Emily wants to know "her story"—don't we all? Did hearing her story directly from Jack and Kate help Emily? Do you think that hearing "your story" helps you understand your life? Do you believe that telling "your story" helps others?

14. At one point in the novel, Emily believes that it would be nicer to live with Katie and Jack. Can you see why she would believe this?

15. Kate has a very close family and they often talk about Luna, and yet her birth and adoption are also a tightly held secret. Do you believe families can hold these kinds of secrets? How do they affect the family and those who are close to them?
(Questions issued by publisher.)

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