What is a mother? Is it the woman who gave birth to you? Is it the woman who raised you? Does either one of those actions automatically make you a mother?
What Was Mine is the story of a baby who was kidnapped when she was four months old. It is also the story of her birth mother, as well as the woman who raised - and tried to get away with the fact that she kidnapped - this baby. I am a fan of Dateline and 48 hours, and this novel's format reminded me of that news style. The majority of chapters were written from the viewpoint of the kidnapped girl and the two “mothers.” After a few chapters, there would be shorter chapters with other minor characters’ points of view. These snippets made the story engaging, as if we were getting someone else’s version of the story.
While the ending of the story could have been much darker and quicker, we know from the beginning it isn’t. The intensity of the story isn’t just from the kidnapping, but from the kidnapper trying to keep it a secret. There were many bittersweet moments in the book. There were milestones that should have been happy, but weren’t. Also, expectations may not have been met, when normally the circumstances would be taken for granted. This emotionally intense story left me feeling for both women, put into challenging circumstances, and their daughter caught in the middle. - Rosanna (Downtown)