Top Ten Tuesday an original feature that was created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Essentially, for each week the list is a new topic and the feature is designed to share lists with other bookish folks!
This week’s Top Ten Tuesday post which was a freebie topic in relation to mothers!
I don’t know about you, but some of my favourite novels are the ones that have a fierce mother at the center of them.
The mothers that will fight for their children, the mothers that will go to the ends of the Earth to protect their children and the mothers that give antagonists a run for their money.
Let’s get real people: mothers are kick ass.
Keep reading to check out my top ten books that have a fierce mother at the center of the plot.
Deep Down Dead: Steph Broadribb
Lori Anderson is as tough as they come, managing to keep her career as a fearless Florida bounty hunter separate from her role as single mother to nine-year-old Dakota, who suffers from leukaemia. But when the hospital bills start to rack up, she has no choice but to take her daughter along on a job that will make her a fast buck. And that’s when things start to go wrong. The fugitive she’s assigned to haul back to court is none other than JT, Lori’s former mentor – the man who taught her everything she knows … the man who also knows the secrets of her murky past.
Not only is JT fighting a child exploitation racket operating out of one of Florida’s biggest theme parks, Winter Wonderland, a place where ‘bad things never happen’, but he’s also mixed up with the powerful Miami Mob. With two fearsome foes on their tails, just three days to get JT back to Florida, and her daughter to protect, Lori has her work cut out for her. When they’re ambushed at a gas station, the stakes go from high to stratospheric, and things become personal.
Breathtakingly fast-paced, both hard-boiled and heart-breaking, Deep Down Dead is a simply stunning debut from one of the most exciting new voices in crime fiction.”
From chapter one, I knew that I was going to love Lori Anderson. After her daughter is taken, she stops at nothing to bring her to safety. Smart, fierce and dynamic, Lori is the type of character that you connect with immediately and root for from the very first line. The kind of character you want to avoid in a dark ally but also take out to dinner.
My review for Deep Down Dead is HERE.
Silent Child– Sarah Deziel
In the summer of 2006, Emma Price watched helplessly as her six-year-old son’s red coat was fished out of the River Ouse. It was the tragic story of the year – a little boy, Aiden, wandered away from school during a terrible flood, fell into the river, and drowned.
… until Aiden returns.
It’s Aiden who has the answers, but he cannot tell the unspeakable.
This novel is narrated, for the most part, by grief-stricken Emma as she grieves for the son that she lost and then the lost years she could have had when Aidan turns up. Emma leads the reader on a journey filled with twists and red herrings; her narration jumps around as she frantically searches for answers. Denzil does a brilliant job at portraying the ferocity of a mother’s love and the desperation of loss. So good.
Method 15/33 by Shannon Kirk
Imagine a helpless, pregnant 16-year-old who’s just been yanked from the serenity of her home and shoved into a dirty van. Kidnapped. Alone. Terrified.
Now forget her …
Picture instead a pregnant, 16-year-old, manipulative prodigy. She is shoved into a dirty van and, from the first moment of her kidnapping, feels a calm desire for two things: to save her unborn son and to exact merciless revenge.
She is methodical, calculating, scientific in her plotting. A clinical sociopath? Leaving nothing to chance, secure in her timing and practice, she waits for the perfect moment to strike. Method 15/33 is what happens when the victim is just as cold as the captors.
The agents trying to find a kidnapped girl have their own frustrations and desires wrapped into this chilling drama. In the twists of intersecting stories, one is left to ponder. Who is the victim? Who is the aggressor?
Lisa is about as strong as they come. Cold and calculating, I remained in shock and awe of her throughout my reading! She quickly takes in her surroundings and bides her time until she can use her assets, from a piece of twine to a cup of water, to help save herself. Some say she was too cold and unbelievable; I found the complete opposite to be true. I found her to be incredibly endearing and the truest example of the intensity of a mother’s instinct.
You can find my review for Method 15/33 HERE.
Perfect Match– Jodi Picoult
In the course of her everyday work, career-driven assistant district attorney Nina Frost prosecutes child molesters and works determinedly to ensure that a legal system with too many loopholes keeps these criminals behind bars. But when her own five-year-old son, Nathaniel, is traumatized by a sexual assault, Nina and her husband, Caleb, a quiet and methodical stone mason, are shattered, ripped apart by an enraging sense of helplessness in the face of a futile justice system that Nina knows all too well. In a heartbeat, Nina’s absolute truths and convictions are turned upside down, and she hurtles toward a plan to exact her own justice for her son — no matter the consequence, whatever the sacrifice.
Nina is everything in this book. She makes all kinds of sacrifices to protect her son and doesn’t even bat an eye. I have loaned this book out to multiple people and the general consensus is that it is amazing.
Good as Gone– Amy Gentry
Thirteen-year-old Julie Whitaker was kidnapped from her bedroom in the middle of the night, witnessed only by her younger sister. Her family was shattered, but managed to stick together, hoping against hope that Julie is still alive. And then one night: the doorbell rings. A young woman who appears to be Julie is finally, miraculously, home safe. The family is ecstatic—but Anna, Julie’s mother, has whispers of doubts. She hates to face them. She cannot avoid them. When she is contacted by a former detective turned private eye, she begins a torturous search for the truth about the woman she desperately hopes is her daughter.
Julie’s mother, Anna, is at the core of this abduction story. Following her instincts, she starts getting a feeling that something isn’t right. Risking everything to find out if this woman is truly her daughter or an imposter.
My review for Good as Gone can be found HERE.
Fierce Kingdom by Gin Phillips
An electrifying novel about the primal and unyielding bond between a mother and her son, and the lengths she’ll go to protect him.
The zoo is nearly empty as Joan and her four-year-old son soak up the last few moments of playtime. They are happy, and the day has been close to perfect. But what Joan sees as she hustles her son toward the exit gate minutes before closing time sends her sprinting back into the zoo, her child in her arms. And for the next three hours–the entire scope of the novel–she keeps on running.
Suddenly, mother and son are as trapped as the animals. Joan’s intimate knowledge of this place that filled early motherhood with happy diversions–the hidden pathways and under-renovation exhibits, the best spots on the carousel and overstocked snack machines–is all that keeps them a step ahead of danger.
A masterful thrill ride and an exploration of motherhood itself–from its tender moments of grace to its savage power–Fierce Kingdom asks where the boundary is between our animal instinct to survive and our human duty to protect one another. For whom should a mother risk her life?
Now, I haven’t read this one yet because it has a summer release date, but it is at the top of my TBR pile! Sounds like an intense, kick-ass mother at the center to me!
House Rules by Jodi Picoult
When your son can’t look you in the eye…does that mean he’s guilty?
Jacob Hunt is a teen with Asperger’s syndrome. He’s hopeless at reading social cues or expressing himself well to others, though he is brilliant in many ways. But he has a special focus on one subject – forensic analysis. A police scanner in his room clues him in to crime scenes, and he’s always showing up and telling the cops what to do. And he’s usually right.
But when Jacob’s small hometown is rocked by a terrible murder, law enforcement comes to him. Jacob’s behaviors are hallmark Asperger’s, but they look a lot like guilt to the local police. Suddenly the Hunt family, who only want to fit in, are directly in the spotlight. For Jacob’s mother, Emma, it’s a brutal reminder of the intolerance and misunderstanding that always threaten her family. For his brother, Theo, it’s another indication why nothing is normal because of Jacob.
And over this small family, the soul-searing question looms: Did Jacob commit murder?
Another Jodi Picoult title on this list because she knows what’s up. This one was another novel that I was in awe of our main character, a mother not only handling a child with exceptionalities but also dealing when that child is accused of murder.
Before This is Over by Amanda Hickie
In the midst of a devastating epidemic, how far will a desperate mother go to keep her loved ones safe?
There is a deadly virus spreading around the world. At first it is a distant alarm bell in the background of Hannah’s comfortable suburban life. Then suddenly, it has arrived on the doorstep.
The virus traps Hannah, her husband, and their young sons in their city, then their neighborhood, and finally their own home. As a formerly idyllic backyard and quiet street become battlefields, fear and compassion collide. But what happens when their water supply is cut, and then the power, and the food supply dwindles?
Chilling and suspenseful, at once deeply personal and terrifying in its implications, Before This is Over invites us to imagine what a family must do to survive when pushed to the extreme.
Throughout the novel, Hannah is the one who is taking, what others believe to be silly, precautions to help her family prepare for an epidemic that is sweeping the country. When she turns out to be correct, she must stand her ground in order to keep her own children, and the children around here, safe.
Never Let You Go by Chevy Stevens
Eleven years ago, Lindsey Nash escaped into the night with her young daughter and left an abusive relationship. Her ex-husband was sent to jail and she started over with a new life. Now, Lindsey is older and wiser, with a teenage daughter who needs her more than ever. When her ex-husband is finally released, Lindsey believes she’s cut all ties. But she gets the sense that someone is watching her. Her new boyfriend is threatened. Her home is invaded, and her daughter is shadowed. Lindsey is convinced it’s her ex-husband, even though he claims he’s a different person. But can he really change? Is the one who wants her dead closer to home than she thought?
Lindsey Nash is one of the ultimate fierce moms. During my reading, this narrative felt like the movie Enough (starring Jennifer Lopez) Taking off in the middle of the night to protect your baby from an abusive man? You go, girl! Lindsay is emotional and compelling.
You can check out my full review HERE.
The Girl Before by Rena Olsen
In this powerful psychological suspense debut, when a woman’s life is shattered, she is faced with a devastating question: What if everything she thought was normal and good and true . . . wasn’t?
Clara Lawson is torn from her life in an instant. Without warning, her home is invaded by armed men, and she finds herself separated from her beloved husband and daughters. The last thing her husband yells to her is to say nothing.
In chapters that alternate between past and present, the novel slowly unpeels the layers of Clara’s fractured life. We see her growing up, raised with her sisters by the stern Mama and Papa G, becoming a poised and educated young woman, falling desperately in love with the forbidden son of her adoptive parents. We see her now, sequestered in an institution, questioned by men and women who call her a different name—Diana—and who accuse her husband of unspeakable crimes. As recollections of her past collide with new revelations, Clara must question everything she thought she knew, to come to terms with the truth of her history and to summon the strength to navigate her future.
Clara Lawson lives on a ranch with her loving husband, Glen and their daughters. One day, their home is raided and, suddenly, Clara’s world is shattered. Glen only has time to tell Clara one thing before he is taken from her. Don’t tell the police anything. Clara wasn’t always Clara. Her husband is a dangerous criminal. The girls are not their daughters. Maybe an unconventional choice for this list but Clara truly does anything to protect the girls she believes to be her daughters!
My full review for this book is HERE.
So, I’d love to hear what fierce literary mothers top your lists! I’m always down for a suggestion.
And, to all you mothers out there, Happy Belated Mother’s Day!