Tuesday, February 17, 2015
Book Review and Giveaway: The Trouble with Dying
Everyone knows the drill by now – you leave your body. Float up to the ceiling. Watch as doctors or others try heroically to bring you back. You drift upwards, and are greeted by long-dead loved ones. They bring you to the light, right up to the time those doctors’ efforts finally pay off and you’re shoved back into your body, ready to live another day. It’s a quick, if not painless, process.
Except for Faith Carson, who’s decided to bypass the dying part and remain on the hospital ceiling while only comatose. Even worse, Faith has lost her memory, so not only can she not remember how she got to this state, she’s also clueless about her daughter Tess, husband Geoff, best friend Cynthia, and childhood friend Nate. In fact, she first thinks Nate must be her husband, and she’s disappointed to learn the truth. Geoff seems to care more about his job than his comatose wife – and maybe Cynthia. In fact, Geoff tells the doctor he has seven days to bring Faith out of it, or he’s pulling the plug. Luckily, Faith has the ghost of her long-dead grandmother to help guide her back to life – as long as Gran doesn’t break too many Death Rules. And can it possibly be true that Faith tried to kill herself?
Author Maggie Le Page offers an intriguing concept, and for the most part she develops it well. The pace is a little slow in the beginning, but by the end things move rapidly and the book becomes fully engrossing. Le Page has written her protagonist into a corner, both literally and figuratively. Comatose and amnesia-stricken, the aptly-named Faith can do little but float and wonder. Although eventually a few memories break through, she’s forced to rely on overheard conversations to try to determine friend from foe. She doesn’t trust her own judgments, even when it comes to her own actions.
The biggest surprise is that the book isn’t a comedy. Its opening chapter reads funny, and the narrative voice is wry. But Faith is trapped, with that ticking time bomb of seven days hanging over her head. This is not a funny book.
The highlight of the book is Faith’s daughter Tess, a six-year-old burgeoning psychic who can see her mother on the ceiling and communicate with her. When the truth about Tess is revealed, though, Faith is the only one who is surprised – the reader isn’t.
The Trouble with Dying probably has more in common with movies like DOA than the standard comedic chick lit novel, but it’s well-written and sticks closely to its plot. Unfortunately, there are so few characters, it’s relatively easy to sort the good from the bad. But Faith is worth rooting for, even though some questions about her own actions are never answered.
Thanks to Maggie for the book in exchange for an honest review. She is offering this book, as well as her debut novel, A Heat of the Moment Thing, to two lucky readers worldwide. (One e-book per winner.)
Becky Jordan has had it with relationships. From now on her time and dedication won’t be lavished on her latest Mr. Wrong—or, worse, Mr. Hell-No!—just the dream travel job which has unexpectedly leapt into her lap. Finally, life is looking great.
Unfortunately, not as great as her sizzling-hot, take-charge new boss. Matt Frobisher is everything she doesn't want him to be, but if anyone thinks she'll risk her career on a workplace fling they can think again. No amount of Superman behaviour from him will make her roll over and play Lois.
At least, that's what her head says. Her heart, however, doesn't do logical. In desperation she finds herself a Mr. Distraction, one with no strings and plenty of appeal. But Mr. Distraction also comes with unforeseen complications. Kryptonite complications, like Becky’s sister. And when she shows up there’s only one sure thing: not even Superman can prevent the Disaster Fest that’s about to blow Becky’s life apart.
How to win: Use Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. If you have trouble using Rafflecopter on our blog, enter the giveaway here.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Worldwide. Giveaway ends February 22nd at midnight EST.