The Promise Between Us by Barbara Claypole White
“Barbara Claypole White does not merely write about people with mental illness—she inhabits them; she IS Katelyn, the young mother overcome with images of killing her new baby, the mother who leaves her baby to keep her safe…Later White IS that same child, Maisie, now beginning to struggle with OCD herself—and all Maisie’s worries, all her thoughts and the details of her pre-teen life are precisely, exactly right. Perfect. White knows how to tell a story, too, how to fully create each additional realistic and fascinating character, and also how to increase suspense as the family drama unfolds. This brilliant novel about obsessive compulsive disorder is compulsively readable.”
—NC Literary Hall of Fame inductee Lee Smith, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Girls
"This is an eye-opening and realistic exploration of mental illness—a topic that greatly deserves to be front and center."
—Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling author of Small Great Things
“In The Promise Between Us, Barbara Claypole White masters the art of bringing a reader up close and personal to the influences and forces of a mental illness. In this powerhouse of a story, Katelyn MacDonald’s decision to give up the precious gift of raising her baby, Maisie, in order to protect her, makes for a compelling page-turner. This is an in-depth portrayal of what it means to live in a world where every single thought or action comes into question; it is a story for the times, a story filled with stark realities; but most important of all, it is a story about hope, healing, and the strength of a mother’s love."
—Donna Everhart, USA Today bestselling author of The Education of Dixie Dupree
Metal artist Katie Mack is living a lie. Nine years ago she ran away from her family in Raleigh, North Carolina, consumed by the irrational fear that she would harm Maisie, her newborn daughter. Over time she's come to grips with the mental illness that nearly destroyed her, and now funnels her pain into her art. Despite longing for Maisie, Katie honors an agreement with the husband she left behind--to change her name and never return.
But when she and Maisie accidentally reunite, Katie can't ignore the familiarity of her child's compulsive behavior. Worse, Maisie worries obsessively about bad things happening to her pregnant stepmom. Katie has the power to help, but can she reconnect with the family she abandoned?
To protect Maisie, Katie must face the fears that drove her from home, accept the possibility of love, and risk exposing her heart-wrenching secret.
Bestselling author Barbara Claypole White writes hopeful family drama with a healthy dose of mental illness. Originally from England, she lives with her beloved OCD menfolk in the forests of North Carolina, where she has fourteen flowerbeds, one of which is home to Horace—a black snake who likes to scare the UPS guy. She is also an OCD Advocate for the A2A Alliance, a nonprofit group that promotes advocacy over adversity.
Barbara's novels include: The Unfinished Garden (2013 Golden Quill Best First Book); The In-Between Hour (Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance Winter 2014 Okra Pick); The Perfect Son (Goodreads Choice Awards Nominee for Best Fiction 2015); and Echoes of Family (Women's Fiction Writers Association 2017 Star Award Finalist).
To connect with Barbara, please visit www.barbaraclaypolewhite.com.