Published by St. Martin's Press on January 19th 2016
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Received from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
The Things We Keep is such a beautiful book about two women and their families. Their lives cross when Eve takes a job at Rosalind House a care facility where Anna lives. Anna has been diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s Disease. Eve’s husband has defrauded his clients and left Eve and their young daughter, Clementine alone and having to fend for themselves in the aftermath of his crime. This book is tole in 3 voices: Anna, Eve, and Clementine.
Anna is taken to Rosalind House by her twin brother, Jack and his family. She has been diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s Disease at thirty eight years of age. At Rosalind House she meets many residents but one stand out for her, Jack. Jack also has a debilitating disease and together they find love. But as Anna’s condition progresses, her brother does what he feels is in her best interest to care for her. Told in Anna’s point of view, her story is sad and tragic. She is a woman who tries to remember and leaves herself notes to help her get through her day to day life. She finally finds love when she is losing herself. Her story is sad, but she is also tough, strong and tries her best to live with her disease.
Eve is a Chef who has to put her skills to use at Rosalind House in an attempt to provide for her and her young daughter. She uses her job to get her daughter into a good school. As she begins her job she meets Anna and other residents at the Home and tries her best to provide for them. She feels for Anna and her relationship with Luke. She tries her best to help them with their love life as she tries to have a love life of her own.
Clem, Eve’s daughter suffers bullying at school due to the crimes committed by her father. Her Mother has tried to protect her and keep the “truth” about her father from her. As she is bullied she begins to have problems at school.
As the stories intertwine, we see into the lives of these 3 females and into their relationships with others. The book travels a little bit in time but if you read the headers the Author does tell you how long ago things happened.
I found this book to be beautiful, sad, heartbreaking and also uplifting at the same time. I think it takes a great deal of care and talent to pull all of those emotions off. Even as I felt bad for Luke and Anna, I was also shown their strength and determinations. This book is about many things but mainly about how the human spirit and how people try to do their best when they are given the worst. How does one cope when the unthinkable happens, when you are presented with a situation that cannot be controlled.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Perfect for book clubs. I highly recommend.