Sunday, December 30, 2007

Sunday Salon: The Story of Forgetting

Today I finished The Story of Forgetting, by Stefan Merrill Block.

This is a beautiful debut novel (a Random House Advanced Reader's Edition, not for sale until April 2008), an epic story centered around generations of a family afflicted with Early Onset Alzheimer's.

I usually select books when I feel I can personally relate to their subject matter. At first, since I'd never had any experience with the disease or known any family members who have, I thought it wouldn't interest me, at least not on such a deeper level.

I couldn't have been more wrong. The story was more than a book centered around a disease that the majority of us (albeit, incorrectly) think we are familiar with. The Story of Forgetting is a patchwork of nuances -- memories found and memories lost, that connect those related by both blood ties and love.

Despite my initial reservations, I discovered that the book spoke to me through a universal theme -- one of its main characters had attempted to forever escape her past. This left open the possibility that she would one day need to come full circle and return home. I have always considered the need to return to my home state of Alabama, to come to an understanding of my own past and the parts of it that haunt me. By choosing this seemingly unfamiliar book, I came face to face with my own inner thoughts.

Here's what readers of this story are saying on LibraryThing.


Wendy said...

This sounds like the type of book I would love. I have never heard of this author - is this a debut novel? Looking forward to reading more of your thoughts!

Wendy said...

Thanks for visiting my blog(s). My main blog is here.

I live in Northern California and would love to read this book - you are very kind to offer to send it to me. I can return it to you after I've read it if you'd like :) email me here: caribousmom at aol dot com for my snail mail...and THANK YOU!!!

Kay Weeks said...

Thanks for your thoughtful review. I will query the title from Barnes and Noble this first day of the new year.

Wendy said...

Thanks again for sending me the book, Jen - I finished it yesterday and posted a review on my blog this morning. A wonderful book!