How would you say goodbye to those you love most in the world?– This question, as asked on the back of the book, is what Barbara must answer as she prepares for her eminent death from cancer. She is leaving behind 4 daughters – Lisa who is a commitment-phobe, Jennifer who is too proud to admit she’s in a bad marriage & too proud to ask for help, Amanda the world traveller who is constantly running away, and Hannah, the baby, not yet 16. Then there’s Mark, the second husband who is 10 years younger than his dying wife & trying to come to grips with what this is doing to his family.
Indeed, how do you say goodbye when you know that the end is near? I think Elizabeth Noble did a fantastic job at proposing a plausible answer to this question. Barbara decides to keep a journal, detailing things she wants her daughters to know after she has died. She also writes letters to each of her children, which they receive on the day of her funeral, along with gifts for the 2 oldest daughters. Jennifer’s gift is her mother’s journal, which she reads, then makes copies of for her sisters. Will the journal help the girls deal with their mother’s death? Will they learn what their mother couldn’t teach them while she was still alive?
I got this book as part of a book ring from the Book Club Forum and to the others in the ring I say “Get ready for a great read!” I expected to be incredibly saddened by this book – in fact others have told me that they were reduced to tears. It didn’t have that affect on me, but I did think that it was a brilliant book! I come from a family of 4 children (3 girls, 1 boy) and I saw so much of my sisters & I in the characters. Happily, my mother is still alive, but there were some definite parallels to our family. I found that because of this, I related to the characters & found myself rooting for them, hoping that they would find their feet after their Mother’s death.
I thought that Things I want my daughters to know was an excellent book & one that I would heartily recommend!
This is the second book I have read by Louise Candlish & this one is even better than the 1st. It’s about three women (Rachel, Mariel & Jenny) who all have daughters roughly the same age. Sitting in a cafe one afternoon the ladies decide to make a pact to take care of each others children, like they would their own, should anything happen to any of them.
Flash forward to when the little girls are all 6 years old & tragedy strikes in the form of the death of one of the children. Feeling she can’t survive in her old life without her daughter, Rachel abandons everything & runs away to live in Santorini, the place her mother was born, but her family had left after a catastrophic earthquake killed her sister. In her rush to escape the awful truth that she’s a mother without a daughter, Rachel cuts everyone out of her life – including her 2 best friends & their daughters.
I think that Louise Candlish has a real gift for finding plots that are new & fresh – I’ve yet to see a book with a similar plot to either of the books of hers I have read. I really enjoyed Since I don’t have you & would recommend it to anyone who was looking for a really good book to read, & I look forward to reading Candlish’s next book on offer!
I read & loved Tuesdays with Morrie a few years ago, so really looked forward to reading The five people you meet in heaven. It was sent to me by Inver, as part of a book ring from the Book Club Forum. I started reading it this morning, around 11:30 & finished it at just before 6 o’clock tonight. It’s a short book, but that isn’t why I read it so fast – it was because I enjoyed it so much!
The story is about Eddie, the head of maintenance at Ruby Pier, who is killed in an accident & goes to heaven. In heaven Eddie meets 5 people who end up profoundly changing the way he views the life he left behind. A life he had believed to be worthless & wholely unremarkable. As the story is so short, I really cannot say any more without giving away too much of the story, so I shall leave it at that & say that I really loved this book & I think that it’s one that should be on the top of everyone’s “Must read before you die” list.