Everyone She Loved

A Novel

Everyone She Loved

A wise and triumphant novel about four women who’ve come of age together only to discover that—when it comes to the essentials—life’s little instruction book will always need revising.

Penelope Cameron has convinced her husband and four closest friends to sign an outlandish pact. If she should die before her two daughters are eighteen, her husband will not remarry without the permission of Penelope’s sister and three college roommates. For years, this contract gathers dust until the unthinkable happens—a disaster that only lovable, worrisome Penelope could have predicted—and everyone she loved is left in a world without her.

With the help of Penelope’s friends, her husband and children slowly build new lives. But just when things start to come together, the fragile serenity they have gained is suddenly threatened from within, and the unbreakable bonds they share seem likely to dissolve after all. Entertaining and uplifting, Everyone She Loved explores the faith one woman placed in those she held dearest, the care she took to protect her family, the many ways in which romantic entanglements will confound and confuse even the most determined of planners, but above all, the abiding strength of friendship.
  • Washington Square Press | 
  • 432 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781416590675 | 
  • March 2010
List Price $25.99
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Reading Group Guide

Everyone She Loved 
Sheila Curran


Penelope Cameron has convinced her husband and four friends to sign an unusual pact. If Penelope should die before her daughters turn eighteen, her husband, Joey, cannot remarry without the consent of her sister and three best friends. Then, the unthinkable happens, and Penelope’s family and friends must struggle to live life without her.

Penelope’s young daughters, her husband, and friends are slowly rebuilding new lives when the fragile serenity they have gained is suddenly threatened. Penelope’s distant cousins are eager to gain control of the family money, and ruthlessly plant seeds of doubt and distrust among the friends. They must pull together and trust each other, as more than their friendships is now at stake.

Questions and Topics for Discussion

1. Even though she is young and healthy, Penelope has a premonition that her life will be cut short. With this in mind, she makes her family and friends sign a document that prevents her husband Joey from marrying “the wrong woman”; her sister and friends must approve of his marriage. Do you agree with Penelope’s actions? Do you think it is fair to Joey to have his future determined by his wife’s sister and her friends?

2. What did Lucy sacrifice in her friendship with Penelope? Did Penelope give Lucy anything in return, either tangible or emotional see more

About the Author

Sheila Curran
Photo Credit:

Sheila Curran

Sheila Curran lives in Tallahassee, Florida, with her husband and children.