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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

THE UNFINISHED WORK OF ELIZABETH D

 
 
A friend  dies unexpectedly and you are left with a strange bequest. 26 years of journals handed over to you since you are deemed to be the one who would understand them best. I can well believe how a husband would feel in these circumstances.
 
Throughout the reading of this novel, what comes mostly to one's mind is how very little we know those around us, even those of us who we are intimate with and with whom we exchange a daily part of our lives. We all seem to have secret compartments of our lives firmly shut against all outsiders and it is only by a strange quirk of something like Elizabeth's death that a Pandora's box is opened and not always with results that can be admired or appreciated.
 
The period of the story covers seven weeks of summer vacation where Kate and her family have their usual vacation but where the presence of the journals is like an ominous presence since Kate's immersion in the stories is immediate and overwhelming. Kate's husband understanding of the emotional impact as it is, is nevertheless nonplussed how to handle Kate as she delves deeper and deeper into the novels. Though Elizabeth is now dead the story also indicates to Kate how tough issues of motherhood, career and life can be balanced and handled. Is it better to bring out into the open problems one faces in life or is it better to just keep quiet and let it be. What is the best way to handle so many issues is delicately handled by this author. Difficult subjects of terminal illness, death, grief, how families cope with death are all handled very well in this book.
 
This was a win from The Blue Bookcase.

2 comments:

Nicola Mansfield said...

I'm not sure if this is my type of book but I just love reading journals. I would love if I inherited a lifetime of journals from someone! Even if I didn't know them!

Bellezza said...

I received this book last summer but haven't read it yet. I think the themes are so real, and the drama of 9/11 so close, that I haven't been eager to pick it up.