Monday, June 18, 2012

(87)Gone by Cathi Hanauer


Publication Date: June 19, 2012
Pages: 368

If I have learned anything in the last two and a half years it is this: Marriage is Hard.   Especially when there are kids involved.  Dynamics changes, relationships evolve, and sometimes the marriage can't withstand the pressures.

Imagine this if you will, Eve and Eric have been married for fourteen years and have two kids.  They have been out to dinner to celebrate the publication of Eve's first book.  Eric leaves to run the babysitter home and never returns.  At first Eve thinks he returned to his studio to work on a sculpture, then she fears that he has had an accident.  It is only after checking the credit card transactions does she realize that he has left.  With the babysitter.  Not a word, not a phone call, nothing.  He is just Gone.

In the weeks following Eric's disappearance, Eve struggles.  She struggles with the grief of losing her husband, she struggles maintaining her career as a nutritionist while holding together her family, she struggles with dealing with her children who don't understand why Dad left, and she struggles to pay the pills with only  her income.   All the while trying to understand why her husband would just leave.  Was he really having an affair with the babysitter or is there something else going on that she doesn't know about?  Throughout the book we get glimpses of Eric's side of the story.  And the important thing to remember is that there is always two sides to the story.

There are some pretty heavy hitting themes in Cathi Hanauer's new novel, Gone. Obviously there is the breakdown of Eve and Eric's marriage, but there is also some pretty deep depression at play, as well as obesity and  the consequences that stem from morbid obesity.  And through it all Eve is desperately trying to hold on to her own sanity and keep things moving along with the least disturbance possible to her children.

Bottom line is that Gone is a beautifully written novel, almost a cautionary tale,  about what happens when life gets in the way of a marriage.  The majority of the story is written from Eve's viewpoint, but we do get to see some of Eric's side of the story and the reader truly gets an understanding just how hard marriage can be from both parties involved.


Why I Read...

I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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