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We Are the Brennans by Tracey Lange
Contemporary fiction

We Are the Brennans

Debut

We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Tracey Lange, on your first book!

Early Release

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by Tracey Lange

Excellent choice

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Quick take

This big-hearted story of an Irish-American family is for anyone who's ever left home only to be drawn back again.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_FamilyDrama

    Family drama

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_LoveTriangle

    Love triangle

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_MarriageIssues

    Marriage issues

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_SuburbanDrama

    Suburban drama

Synopsis

When twenty-nine-year-old Sunday Brennan wakes up in a Los Angeles hospital, bruised and battered after a drunk driving accident she caused, she swallows her pride and goes home to her family in New York. But it's not easy. She deserted them all—and her high school sweetheart—five years before with little explanation, and they've got questions.

Sunday is determined to rebuild her life back on the east coast, even if it does mean tiptoeing around resentful brothers and an ex-fiancé. The longer she stays, however, the more she realizes they need her just as much as she needs them. When a dangerous man from her past brings her family's pub business to the brink of financial ruin, the only way to protect them is to upend all their secrets—secrets that have damaged the family for generations and will threaten everything they know about their lives. In the aftermath, the Brennan family is forced to confront painful mistakes—and ultimately find a way forward, together.

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Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of We Are the Brennans.
We Are the Brennans

Chapter One

Sunday

The grinding noise and vibration of the rumble strips under her passenger-side tires snapped Sunday to attention. Getting behind the wheel had been a bad idea. She tightened her grip at ten and two. Then she worked her eyes a bit, blinking and widening them, because a passing “Construction Ahead” sign briefly doubled. Her exit was coming up, just a few more minutes. She checked her speed and nudged the accelerator. Denny used to tell her the cops looked for cars going too slow, a sign of drunk driving.

She’d ordered an Uber, but the estimated time of arrival kept getting pushed back. Probably some Hollywood event going on, which always played havoc with the traffic. At some point she looked up from her phone to realize she’d been left alone with the bartender. That’s when she rushed out of there and decided to chance it.

It had been a last-minute invite that afternoon. Mia—or was it Maia?—another waitress who’d only been at the diner for a couple months, asked Sunday to come out for her birthday. She almost said no and went home. Like she did most nights. But if she went home she would open the email from Jackie and stare at the photo again, and that thought was too damn painful. She wanted to be anywhere other than her lonely apartment that night. So she’d gone to the annoying hipster bar with the LED ice cubes to attend a birthday party for a girl she barely knew.

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Why I love it

From the moment Sunday Brennan gets into a bad accident, her scars on the inside are the ones that make you root for her healing. I’m a sucker for a family drama with a flawed woman at the center who must return home to make peace with her painful past. I couldn’t wait for all the tea to be spilled!

We Are the Brennans is the story of an Irish-Catholic family fractured by shame and secrets. When eldest daughter Sunday wrecks her car after a night of heavy drinking in LA, she sets her pride aside and moves back east to her family’s New York home. But her once tight-knit family is not as she left it: Her father is losing his memory, her brother is struggling to keep his pub afloat, and her ex-fiancé is now married to another woman. As Sunday tries to keep her head down and find her place in this changed home, tales of past mistakes and long-held secrets unfold, forcing the family to come together, rebuild, and find redemption.

Reading this moving novel made me feel like I was lurking in the Brennan home eavesdropping on what these characters said to themselves and each other when they thought no one else was around. This book explores the burdens we carry, sometimes to the grave, and the ripple effects they often have on generations to come. When the lies begin to unravel, you won’t be able to turn the pages fast enough to discover how this family can find forgiveness and be made whole again.

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Member ratings (28,899)

  • Katie S.

    Neenah, WI

    I literally could not put this down and staying up late to finish in only 2 days. I loved getting to know the Brennans, was rooting for Sunday and loved the way the POV changed each chapter ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Katie S.

    Jacksonville, FL

    Loved everything about this book! You are drawn in from page one with the Brennan family, the secrets that pushed them apart, and they love they share that pulled them all back together. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Emily S.

    Dallas, TX

    I could not put it down! It was a great story about family, relationships, and coming home again. I loved the changing perspectives and how the chapter’s transitioned from one to the next. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐ ️

  • Hannah M.

    Jamestown, NC

    Really engaging and a good page turner. Even when it was “slow” I didn’t want to put it down so I could find out what happens next. I liked that even though there was romance, it wasn’t the main event

  • Holly K.

    Saint Joseph, MO

    This isn’t normally the type of books I’d “love” but I just really enjoyed the dynamic of this family and way the story unfolded. Then ending was not my favorite but overall I really enjoyed this read

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