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Remedies

Kate Ledger’s Remedies will shake you up a bit.  [The paperback is coming out August 3rd; hence the renewed recommendation by the St. Paul Pioneer Press yesterday.]  [Update 1.11.11: This article is now gone.  Go get the book and see for yourself!]  Heartbreaking and painful at times, joyous and freeing at times, it whisks you into the depths of a failing marriage.  It’s rare that an author gets this sort of thing right, and Ledger does a marvelous job of it.  So much so, that at times, you want to reach in and grab the characters by the shoulders and scream, “Do you not see what’s happening here?”

Simon Bear is the gung-ho doctor and the rabid hobbyist who’s invincible.  If he wills it, he thinks it will be done.  When he discovers what he thinks is a sure-fire cure for chronic pain, he sacrifices everything for his suffering patients.  He caters to their every whim and need, while back at home, his wife and daughter suffer neglect.  There are hidden wounds that have not been tended to, and they’ve festered and grown so large, they seem too big to broach, let alone overcome.  Simon is a healer, on the one hand, yet ironically, he seems unable to see the illness plaguing his own family.

It’s a story of profound grief and betrayal, and yet, through it all, there shines the slimmest ray of hope that all will be well.

It’s my recommendation for today.  For more information, see Kate’s website.

Perhaps while you’re reading, you might want to indulge in Spike Mendelsohn’s Almond Joy Milkshake.  Just sayin’.  Books…food…comfort all around.

[Post image: Detail of Remedies by Kate Ledger cover]

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The quote I live by

Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.
--Rainer Maria Rilke in Letters to a Young Poet

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