Not My Daughter by Barbara Delinksy

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Not My Daughter by Barbara Delinksy

Delinksy, Barbara. Not My Daughter. Doubleday, 2010. ISBN 978-0385524988 352 pp. $24.95

Told from the point of view of a high school principal and former teenage mom, Susan is horrified to discover that her responsible 17-year-old daughter Lily is more than 3 months pregnant–and she’s not revealing who the dad is. Even more astounding: two of Lily’s friends are pregnant as well, and it’s suspected that a fourth student is still trying to conceive.

Set in small town in New England, this tale of a pregnancy pact is a microcosm of what happened at Gloucester (MA) High School in 2008. Susan has a second business with her three best friends, dyeing and selling yarn and knits goods, and the crisis may impact this business as well. Knitting plays heavily into the plot, and the author’s correlation of the plot’s complexities using the metaphor of knitting is a bit heavy-handed.

Delinksy uses recurring stock characters in her novels. The intelligent and somewhat self-centered teen, the hard-working single mom that finds romance, and the controlling husband all make an appearance here. Juggling the stories of so many characters means that no one in particular really develops any degree of depth, and the ending is tidily, predictably resolved.

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