Saturday, September 7, 2013

Review ~ A Three Dog Life by Abigail Thomas

This short memoir (197 pages), published by Houghton-Mifflin, started off as a page turner, and it kept my attention the whole way through.  I loved the un-sentimental retelling of the narrator's life after her husband was hit by a car.  He suffered grievous brain-damage--to the point that he was never able to live at home again--and the way she learned to cope, and finally come to terms with her new life, was inspiring indeed.

I won't give away the title, but suffice it to say that I completely understand the three-dog analogy, and admire it.

And although I said I admired the unsentimental retelling, in retrospect, I think delving a little deeper into the pain might have made me slow down and appreciate it even more.  In places, I felt as if the truth had received a glossy finish, one that might crack if exposed to sunlight.  On the other hand, she did say that she loved her life without her day-to-day husband, so perhaps the finish wasn't all that superficial after all.

The biggest flaw in the book, in my humble opinion, is one that I am guilty of in my own writing, and that is, a rushed ending.

I couldn't believe how abruptly it ended!

Later, attempting to make sense of why the story ended the way it did, I ruminated on the idea that this is how tragedy often occurs, abruptly, out of the blue . . . but is that what the author was trying to say?  I hope so.  I hate to think she simply ran out of things to say.  Am I the only one who felt this way?

Read it for yourself, then leave me a comment.  Please.

Afterthought:  Loved it, but ending was abrupt.

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