Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Day We Met - Book Review

Claire Armstrong has a lovely life. She's has two daughters--Caitlin, nearly grown and off to college and Esther, not yet ready for preschool. Her handsome husband Greg loves her desperately. And her mother Ruth would drop anything to help her daughter. Claire's life is wonderful except that she's forgetting it all.

Claire has been diagnosed with early onset-Alzheimer's--the same disease that took her father when she was young. Some days she feels entirely lucid and the next moment she's confused. She can't remember the name of her daughter. She has forgotten the all-consuming love she once shared with Greg.

Ruth and Caitlin have changed their own plans to come and help care for Claire, but in her clearer moments, Claire senses that all  is not right with Caitlin and tries in her last cognizant moments to help her daughter put her life back on track before she is lost to her forever.

The Day We Met by Rowan Coleman is an emotional roller coaster with characters that begged to be loved and understood by the reader. Since we have a member of our own family suffering from Alzheimer's Disease (thankfully not early-onset), I was especially moved by the portrayal of a character struggling with the incurable disease. It was very interesting to have Claire narrate her own story and see the neurological disconnects as she goes from understanding to confusion.

The novel is a beautiful story that I found myself completely wrapped up in. I cared intensely for the characters and ached with their own heart ache. Just this morning some friends and I were discussing why we read sad books and why sometimes it feels good to cry while reading a novel. We feel the emotion felt from the characters and see their perspective and gain a greater understanding for our own lives. The Day We Met will definitely inspire you to reach for the tissues. But as you wipe away the tears, you will feel.

The Day We Met by Rowan Coleman is published by Ballatine Books in March 2015.

**I received a complimentary copy of The Day We Met. No other compensation was received. All opinions are my own.**

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