Well, in much the same way I wanted to start the In Shock review on a positive note, I’ll start with the good. This is beautifully written. Levy is an engaging writer, and I want to read a book about fluffy bunnies and lollipops by her.
This is not that book.
I may need an adult.
This was like Dr. Rana Awdish’s book, but without the medical degree that gave her tragedy the ability to inform others’ care in addition to the benefit of sharing loss by expressing grief eloquently. Levy’s writing may be more vivid, more stark, more beautiful, but it offers nothing but her own experience, and that experience is HORRIFFIC.
My heart hurt at the end of this.
I need a drink.
I’m not rating this; possibly more than any book I’ve read for CBR I appreciate it, I understand and value it, but I can’t say I liked it. It’s like Requiem for a Dream, I’m glad I read it. Once.
I’m gonna go wake up my kid and hug him.
If you haven’t read the review for In Shock, or somehow haven’t been scared off by the previous paragraphs, here’s your last chance trigger warning:
This book follow’s Levy’s life imploding; her loss of home and financial collapse as her marriage and disintegrates due to her partner’s alcoholism, all after she miscarries at 19 weeks, delivering a live baby too young to survive. The complications were from placental abruption, just as in Awdish’s book, and Levy’s advanced maternal age precludes her from further pregnancy even before her marriage ending complicates the situation. No details are spared, I’m gonna try not to have nightmares.
There is no joy in Mudville. There’s no hope here, this is a book about a door closing and admiring the awful sound. It’s what happened, so it’s wrong to begrudge Levy the lack of a sunny postscript, but MY GOD was this brutal. She even describes others talking to her about her misfortune – repeatedly proven to be medical bad luck – as though she had done something wrong, as if they could stave off her bad luck by proving she had done something to court it, and I understood the impulse even as I wanted to reach inside the book and throttle them. I wrote this review immediately after reading in hopes of stuffing it down the memory hole ASAP.
I’m taking all the photos of my family and shellacking them to the wall to more wholly appreciate them, and reading something fun next.