Friday, April 6, 2012

Book review: Left Neglected

I just have to say that I love my book club! They are introducing me to new books I would not think to read- granted, most of my reading is in YA or children's lit as that's what I usually teach from. Sometimes a good "adult" book is just what I need.

I am glad this book came up as our pick to read for April. It was totally different from our first book (The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton-review here), but yet still a really good read. First, it was shorter which was nice after a 550 page intro to book club book- and super busy month. Not that that counts as why it was a good book! It's just a bonus when there is a good book that is shorter.

Image from here

Left Neglected is the story of a hardworking executive mom of 3, Sarah, who hardly spends time with her family and is used to life being just so including expensive clothing, cars, and making sure everything is top of the line. She and her husband are content in their life seeing their kids maybe 2 hours out of the day and pouring a majority of their lives into their jobs- sounds like a lot of us even if we don't make tons of cash, huh? I love characters I can somewhat relate to.  One unfortunate day, she ends up in a major car accident that should have claimed her life but instead she was spared only to have brain damage- a condition called Left Neglected.

This condition causes her to forget she has a left side. Anything on the left is neglected by her- including her extremities. Due to the severity of the disease she has to stay in a hospital/rehab facility for several months. She ends up being cared for not by her hubby who is working as much as possible since his job is potentially on the line as the company he works for is tanking but by her mother whom she isn't fond of. The story progresses and you see how she learns to live with left neglected while realizing what truly has been neglected all these years.

Lisa Genova spins a wonderful story with just the right amount of detail and struggle. She enlightens us to the condition that is Left Neglected- an actual type of brain damage.

In my opinion, this is a story for all working moms trying to make ends meet and fill all the needs of the family. A friend and I have been talking about how she loved the book Eat, Pray, Love but was saddened that almost all stories of finding yourself for women revolve around being single and not having a family. I'm recommending this book to her. It's a good read and inspiring- even if the situation presented to the main character is not one that is realistic for us. I mean, who wants brain damage that causes them to not notice things on their left, right, or anywhere/any kind of brain damage for that matter????

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