Meg believes she knows everything about her life. Her parents are dead and her older sister, Lucy, has cared for her ever since she was a baby. They travel from town to town in California, following Lucy’s jobs and boyfriends. Meg has learned to be self-sufficient since she was very young, because Lucy is overwhelmed providing for the two of them on her own.
For years she has turned to Jennifer Aniston—the actress from friends—for emotional support, writing her letters detailing the difficulties she faces in school and at home. Jen has always written back with great advice and sometimes even gifts to help Meg through rough situations. When Meg starts another new school to go with a new apartment that follows Lucy’s new boyfriend, she thinks her life will continue to follow this pattern for years to come.
Then a man shows up at the apartment Meg shares with Lucy claiming to be her uncle from New York. He talks about a family back east that she knows nothing about, and tries to convince Lucy to go there. Suddenly, everything Meg thinks she knows about her life changes, and when Lucy refuses to reconnect with her family, Meg sets off without her. Moving to New York becomes a journey of self-discovery as well as a way to get to know the family she never had.
What she finds is not what she expects, but she discovers a lot about herself and the true meaning of family along the way.
Love, Meg by C. Leigh Purtill looks at what it means to be a mother, a daughter, a grandmother, and all the ways that family can support us as well as tear us down. I recommend it for mother-daughter book clubs with girls 12 and older.