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July 25, 2012

Book Review: The Widow's Season by Laura Brodie

I've decided I'm starting a new series on my blog where I review books. One of my resolutions for the year is to read at least 5 books. I know, big whoop. But as much as I adore reading, it's hard for me to find time to do it. But it's totally doable. I borrowed the idea to review the books I read from Stephanie over at Confessions of a City Eater, except that she has the goal of reading 52 books in a year! Wowza! I WISH! I also love the idea of having a written journal of all of my thoughts and maybe even quotes I love from certain books. There are so many books I've loved in the past that I wish I remembered to a tee, or was able to look back and remember how exactly I felt about them while reading. So I'm doing it!

I actually read this book for the 2011 challenge, so I'm a tad late posting this. It is called The Widow's Season by Laura Brodie. I know what you're thinking, depressing choice, right? I agree. But ever since I found Vee's blog, I've been interested in widows' stories. How they go on with their lives, how they cope with the everyday life, how, how, how. As I was reading this book, I just kept thinking about Vee and her story, her actual "novel" that was her new reality. I just kept thinking, this is a fiction book, but that is Vee's actual life. I think that makes a great book... when it can touch you and feel so much like real life that it scares you. That if the events of the book were to actually take place, you wouldn't know how to cope. That's how I feel when I read Vee's blog. I wouldn't know how to do it. I wouldn't know how to be strong, like she is. 

Except that the book is fiction, and Vee's story is not. 

Please take a moment to stop by Vee's blog and read her story, about the loss of her husband while she was pregnant, and then her brother not too long after, and about her life, and her strength to get through each day. Vee in her own right is a beautiful writer, her words always touch me so much, that I can't even try to put it into words. Every post is soul wrenching, beautiful, painful, brilliant, eloquent, and honest all at once. She has a way of bringing every visual to life, whether we want to envision it or not. And I think it's beautiful that she allows us into her thoughts. She is strong, she is beautiful. She is one of my heros, and I don't even know her. I'm forever touched by that girl.

Well, this book ended up being nothing like I imagined. Not a bereavement guide for widows, simply a captivating fictional piece of work. In the novel, Sarah lost her husband David in a kayaking accident. The body was never found, and though they had a memorial service for him, she never fully had closure since they never buried his body. She kept seeing him everywhere... in the grocery store, in her house, in the mirrors, outside her window or door. I imagine that is how I would feel if this happened to me. Especially if they never found the body. I would always be yearning and hoping he would show up. That he would have just been lost for a long time, but finally found. Finally home.

The beginning had me emotional and doing some inner soul searching. You would think I wouldn't want to read books like these, because I am an emotional person who is easily brought to tears. But I like to think about how special and important my fiancee is in my life. I like to remember it always, and books like this and stories like Vee's make me cherish every single moment I have with him. I cherish the love he gives me, because I know how it could be taken from me. And I never want that. Ever. They say you don't know what you have until it's gone... well, I don't want to ever have to know that. I want to know what I have before it's gone, and adore it every waking moment of my life.

Now I don't want to give away too much of the plot, in case anyone decides to read it. Let's just say that it became less "heartbreaking" as the story went on. This book that I originally thought would have me crying tears of sadness really wasn't meant to be a sad book after all. If you were turned off by the thought of this being a gut-wrenching grief-filled novel, don't be. It's really not like that at all. If you like suspenseful fictional novels with a touch of love, drama, and mystery, you will like this book. I could have done without some of the plot (such as a predictable affair), but I didn't want to put the book down so that's a good thing.

Overrall, I enjoyed the book thoroughly. Especially the ending, which I think I fully understand. This book will keep you guessing all along... is he a ghost, is he real, is it all a huge dream? I'd definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good fiction novel, but not to someone who is looking to this book for some guidance on handling widowdom. 

4 of 5 stars false

Stay tuned for more book reviews. And make your own reading challenge goal here!

Peace, and bacon grease!


Stephanie said...

This is a fun challenge! I'm doing it again this year but I haven't written about it on my blog. I'm on book 24 right now. I'm looking forward to see what books you pick and, if you haven't already, pick up The Hunger Games. My favorite book!

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