Well worth working your way into. It takes a while to get used to the format, but a thoroughly enjoyable novel. Have passed this on to numerous folks
How's the life when you grown up in a family that mother has mental disorder? When you're a child you have taught how to take out the unnecssary goods from supermaket's truck without waking your mum's attention; when you're a child you knew well there's no point to cry for some comfort from her, coz she ignored it or she pretended she didn't see it. When you have your own family, you hestitate to have children, coz you afraid the problem would transfer to next generation;.......
Yeah, life is hard, but You maybe luck you have gone through it than not, coz these difficulties made you strong. It's a heart touching book.
I’m not sure I’ve confessed to this before, but I’m a bit of a fan of Richard & Judy’s book club - I don’t read everything they recommend but I have discovered some great books thanks to them. My latest read comes from their 2008 reading list - and once again I wasn’t disappointed.
I’ve not come across Patrick Gale before so had no idea what to expect from this novel - it took a while to get into it but once I was I really enjoyed it.
The novel tells the story of Rachel Kelly - an artist whose genius stems from her being bipolar. Rachel dies early on in the book and the remaining chapters are presented alongside notes from an exhibition detailing her life’s works. Each note sheds new light on a story that twists and turns as we are introduced to her husband, each of her four children and finally her sister. Through the words of each family member we learn more about Rachel’s life - interestingly each person sees her in a different light, and sometimes perceptions differ quite significantly from the truth.
This book isn’t written in a linear fashion - instead it jumps back and forth in time as each person shares a part of the tale that you as a reader must piece together to understand the bigger picture; to understand how Rachel’s’ illness affects each family member in a different way, to appreciate how events and her mental state impact on her art, and to empathise with Rachel as her illness affects her relationship with her children and her husband.
As well as learning more about Rachel’s life Gale also makes you think about wider themes; mental illness, art, Quakerism and family.
I wasn’t sure how much I liked this book as I was reading it - but now I’m done I think I did enjoy it - and perhaps it would be best read in a single sitting or two - perfect for a transatlantic flight perhaps....Continua