Get 50% off Catholic Books & eBooks

Discover the Next Tolkien & O'Connor

Join Here for FREE to Never Miss a Deal

Find new favorites & Support Catholic Authors


General Fiction, Contemporary Fiction


Ages 16 and Up

Author’s Worldview


Year Published



Motherhood, Anxiety, Depression, Friendship, Marriage


Reviewed by

M.S. Ocampo

Cara Nielsen is a mother taking on the big city alongside her husband. This contemporary novel follows Cara as she struggles to raise two toddlers while balancing her anxiety and depression.

This novel reminds me of Everything, Everywhere, All at Once without the multiverse factor. Cara is juggling depression, discontent, anxiety, and paranoia over worst-case scenarios regarding her children. Cara struggles to connect with her own children without anyone else helping her out. Cara is isolated from any sort of extended family, and her husband works as the sole breadwinner. As much as she loves her kids, being a mother isn’t something she instantly learns how to cope with. At the same time, she has friends, goes to therapy, and has a life outside of being a housewife and a mother. She loves going to the movies, for example. Movies are a sort of escapism for her, but they sell her a lie, glamorizing life in the big city.

Cara is trying to figure out what being a mother and what being herself mean. She used to be a working woman, a journalist and a movie reviewer. With two kids, however, she has to balance her new life while trying to keep elements of the life she used to have. Cara says that motherhood adds a whole new dimension to her understanding of life.

The contemplative nature of the book makes the events seem very slice-of-life at first–until Cara gets caught up in a whirlwind of crisis after crisis involving her circle of friends. Cara stands in the eye of a metaphorical hurricane, while her friends deal with their marriages falling apart and other personal issues, all while Cara is trying to keep her own life together.

The Catholic themes in this novel are quite prominent. Cara goes to church along with her family, and there are scenes where a priest gives a sermon that ties into the overall themes of the novel. Cara also develops a devotion to Saint Augustine and turns to his wisdom quite often. Cara’s faith gives her some sense of stability and helps her when she gets caught in the hurricane.

I recommend this novel for readers who like a slow-burn drama and enjoy character studies. Catholic mothers who are raising young children will particularly enjoy this read, even if they don’t live in a big city, because the setting is quite immersive.

Get Catholic Books & eBooks for as little as $1 to FREE

Saving the Statue of Liberty By Andrea Jo Rodgers

Can John save the Statue of Liberty and keep from getting kicked off the team and out of the Academy?

Big in Heaven by Fr. Stephen Siniari

In this inner-city Orthodox parish, there are no easy answers—only the transformative power of God’s love.

Absence by Kaye Park Hinckley

Absence will chill you with the stark reminder that human beings are not just bodies, but souls whose spiritual influence cannot be suppressed, even when the bodies have gone missing.

A Life Decision by Laurie M. Lamb

When Joe and Peyton find out that their unborn baby may have Down Syndrome, they are faced with a devastating decision.

Relic of His Heart by Jane Lebak

An atheist midwife has no idea what she’s in for when she makes a deal with an angel.

Everything Old: Love in Anadauk Book 1 by Amanda Hamm

Two youth group leaders rekindle their friendship and find love with each other along the way.

Rachel’s Contrition by Michelle Buckman

After the loss of her child, Rachel goes insane but she must pull her mind back together to solve a murder and save her own life.

Lying Awake by Mark Salzman

A cloistered nun confronts her faith when she realizes that the private revelations she has been given might be the product of epilepsy.

Beneath Wandering Stars by Ashlee Cowles

A young girl goes pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago on behalf of her brother and finds her place in the world.

A Distant Prospect by Annette Young

Lucy has been broken by the horrors of polio and the war for Irish Independence. Can Australia offer her a new life and a new home?

The River of Life by Diana González Tabbaa

The death of little Anthony’s father shakes his faith until a heaven-sent friend helps him find his way back to God.

August & September New Book Releases

Step into Fall with a Good Book

The Grace Crasher by Mara Faro

The Grace Crasher is the ecumenical romantic dramedy that everyone who has ever had family members in split churches needs to read.

Ghosts of the Faithful by Kaye Park Hinckley

The O’Murphy family gets help from beyond the grave as they deal with long held secrets.

The Table by Dennis Lambert

A table built by the grandfather of Jesus Christ survives the darkest moment in history to bring peace to a widowed musician

Why Reading Fiction Made Me a Better Catholic

How reading fiction became a crucial step in my conversion to the Catholic Church.

Someday by Corinna Turner

Ordinary schoolgirls face a terrible fate: abuse, forced marriages, and even death at the hands of Islamic extremists.

Celtic Crossing by Len Mattano

Relic lost, and faith found.

Finding Grace by Laura Pearl

Amidst the Free-love Women’s-lib culture of the 70’s how can one young girl find her path to sainthood?

Zeal & Zest: Where to Begin with Hillaire Belloc

Belloc was known as a Catholic polemicist with a vicious talent for skewering his opponents. Anyone struggling to persevere as a Christian in the fields of journalism or media should read him. His children’s books have an acerbic humor that will appeal to bored veterans of political correctness, especially teens.