"The Quest": Novel by Libby Lazewnik: Full Plot Summary

by bhthanks

The Quest: Novel by Libby Lazewnik: A full plot summary, synopsis and review of The Quest book.

"The Quest", a novel by Libby Lazewnik, starts off with the passing away of Deborah Barron, survived by her two children Carol and Mark, and Carol's adopted daughter Elizabeth. Immediately before Grandma Deborah slipped into her last coma she had informed Elizabeth that her birth mother's name was Irena. When the estate lawyer, Howard Bestman, reads Deborah's final will, those present are shocked to hear that the deceased had left one million dollars to her former maid, Irena Nudel Fuyalovich. The will states that in the case that Irena is not found, deceased, or unwilling to accept the money, it should then be split between Carol and Elizabeth.

Elizabeth is thrust into a state of turmoil, a deep desire to find out the mystery behind her birth, to meet her birth mother, and to understand why her mother abandoned her. However, Elizabeth's adoptive mother and Deborah's only daughter, Carol, informs the lawyer that upon finding Irena, he should persuade her into not accepting the money, and furthermore, she should not be told anything about Elizabeth, and he should try his best to prevent them from meeting one another.

Buy it here: Books by Libby Lazewnik

The Quest

When her adoptive grandmother, on her deathbed, reveals the identity of Aliza Hollander's birth mother, Aliza instantly develops a single, burning ambition: to track down her el...

Mesorah Publications Ltd.  / $26.99  $17.00

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Bubbles and other stories

Get ready to float away with Libby Lazewnik's sparkly, bright, colorful story collection! A distant pen-pal inadvertently saves her friend from disaster ...The best singer in sc...

Judaica Press  / $19.95  $15.96

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The Lemonade Lesson

Like a cool drink of lemonade on a hot summer day, these stories, from well-loved author Libby Lazewnik, are refreshing and stimulating. You will laugh, cry, and reflect as you ...

Targum Pr  / Only $16.99

View on Amazon

The lawyer then hires a private detective to find Irena and intimidate her into not accepting the money. Elizabeth meets someone who knew her mother twenty years before, leading to a wild goose chase as she tries to piece together what happened. She sends down a friend to California, where her birth mother was last heard from, to track her down. In the meantime, Carol sends her brother Mark down to California to find Irena and silence her before anyone else gets to her.

            The story emerges about a scandal that took place twenty years before. Carol, a spoiled princess who always got what she wanted, had a miscarriage shortly after her marriage and three weeks later Irena was due to give birth. As luck would have it, on the day of Elizabeth's birth, both Deborah, Carol's mother, and Dave Hollander, Carol's husband at the time, were away on business trips. It was a dark and stormy night and Carol was left to fulfill her malicious plan. Carol's brother Mark delivered Irena's baby in their house and sedated Irena while Carol took the baby for herself. When Irena awoke they informed her that her baby had died during the night, and convinced her that since she was an immigrant, who gave birth at home to a dead baby, it would look suspicious to the authorities, and she would be prosecuted. They gave her money and scared her into leaving right away. The heartbroken widow, convinced that her baby was dead, left town immediately. Carol then told everyone that Irena had felt depressed and unable to care for the baby and therefore had left the girl in her care. Everyone thought that Irena had abandoned her baby; the only ones knowing what really happened were Carol and Mark. Deborah, however, suspected that this was not full truth but was elderly and wont to do anything about it. Now, upon her passing, she left money to Irena in her will and everyone was in frenzy as a result of it.

            Mark is the first person to meet Irena, and feeling guilty about what happened, he tells her the truth, whereupon Irena flies back to New York to confront Carol. Elizabeth is also on her way to visit Carol. In the meantime, the private detective, Harry Blake, who was following Irena in his efforts to intimidate her, followed her back to Carol's house. When the lawyer hears from him that she is exactly where she wasn't supposed to be, he flies into a rage and lets it out on Harry, who then fiddles with the car and sets up an exploding device in the garage, and drives away.

            Elizabeth and Irena are both hurt in the resulting explosion and rushed off to the hospital. Harry also sets up a trap in the lawyer's car, which ends up hurting both himself and Bestman. Soon enough, the entire story unfolds for all to know, mother and daughter are reunited, Mark escapes from the clutches of his vengeful sister, and Carol is left to live the rest of her days alone in her mother's mansion.

-Lazewnik, L. (2003).  The Quest. Brooklyn, NY: Shaar Press.

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Updated: 12/28/2011, bhthanks
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