Tabitha can barely feed herself and her two children after her husband, Stuart, abandons them. Residing in an upmarket Philadelphia apartment, she doesn't tell anyone about her troubles and without much cash, she resorts to pilfering food, toilet paper, whatever she can lay her hands on, and keeping a list of those she owes.
Tabitha's plight - particularly the lengths she goes to to find food for her kids - was confronting as you think about what would you do in that situation. I suspect I'd spend a bit more time than Tabitha looking for a job although she did have good reason for losing confidence in her food business. I found it an interesting read although the explanations about why her husband took off and left that message in his departure note didn't have the dramatic punch I was hoping for.
Not Perfect, by Elizabeth LaBan, centres around a mother's fall from grace. The summary says: "Tabitha Brewer wakes up one morning to find her husband gone, leaving her no way to support herself and their two children, never mind their upscale Philadelphia lifestyle. She'd confess her situation to her friends - if it wasn't for those dreadful words of warning in his goodbye note: 'I'll tell them what you did.'
Instead, she does her best to keep up appearances, even as months pass and she can barely put food on the table - much less replace a light bulb. While she looks for a job, she lives in fear that someone will see her stuffing toilet paper into her handbag or pinching basil from a neighbour's window box.
Soon, blindsided by catastrophe, surprised by romance, and stunned by the kindness of a stranger, Tabitha realises she can't keep her secrets forever. Sooner or later, someone is bound to figure out that her life is far from perfect." Not Perfect is out in February 2018.