Tuesday, December 22, 2009

HELLO GOODBYE: A NOVEL by Emily Chenoweth (2009)

This novel about a brain cancer patient's final summer is deft and not self-pitying. It's written from a third person perspective, so you have a little emotional distance from the three main characters, a self-absorbed university-aged daughter (Abby) and her parents (Elliott and Helen).

Clearly Chenoweth has walked this grief walk in her own life, because many of the details smack of a reality that is not contrived and essentially believable.

Sparing the reader the final goodbye, Chenoweth wisely closes the book with Helen (in the final stages of her inoperable brain cancer--a fate her healthy lifestyle couldn't spare her) looking over her shoulder as her husband and daughter jog up the path to meet her.

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