Thursday, August 5, 2010

Every Last One

Every Last One by Anna Quindlen

Anna Quindlen is one of my favorite authors. I have read five books penned by Quindlen and each time I walk away in awe. Her non-fiction books are life changing and her fiction books tend to knock my socks off every time.

This book was a 5 hanky read for me. The family in this book have three children and the mother, Mary Beth narrates the story. She has one son named Max, as do I, and their personalities and problems were so similar, I couldn't help crying just because I was reliving a bit of my own experience. In the book Max is depressed, angry, misunderstood, seeing a psychologist, is a drummer and loved immensely by his mother. This describes my son too and I am crying just writing these words. Parenting is so hard especially when one of your children is suffering.

I would compare Anna Quindlen's fiction writing to Flannery O'Connor. Have you ever read O'Connor? Well, they both pack a punch. Basically, you are reading the book, thinking in your head, well there is a little foreboding going on, this guy is a little strange, this is a story about a regular family, she's so sweet and then WHAM!, a swift punch right to the stomach and you can't breathe. You don't know what hit you or how you can keep reading, but you do keep reading. That is my experience reading Every Last One.

As a person who has PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), this book had me crying to the very last page. I believe that several of the characters in the book also suffered from PTSD and that this is their story of survival amidst tragedy. Humans fight hard to survive even though it is more difficult than dying. Surviving trauma is very hard work.

Is this book sad? Yes
Is this book scary? Sort of but not in the way you think
Is this book worth reading? Definitely
Will everyone like this book? Not sure
Will this book make you think? Absolutely
Will I read more Quindlen books? You better believe it!

Where will this book go? I am donating this book to Crazy Book Tours. If you want to read it, sign up, I believe there is still space available.

Check out the author's website at

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