11/19/12

Love Anthony - Lisa Genova

I was SO excited to read this book, possibly a little too excited.  I'd seen an endless string of five star reviews on Goodreads, and so I ordered a copy on Chapters without even reading the summary.  If it's Lisa Genova, it's gotta be awesome, right?  I devoured both Still Alice and Left Neglected, so I had very high hopes for this book.

Then, I happened to be looking around on the Chapters website and saw that she was coming to do a signing in Vancouver.  IT IS SO RARE THAT AN AUTHOR THAT I LIKE EVER COMES TO VANCOUVER!  So I was even more excited.  I waited anxiously for my copy to arrive in the mail and it FINALLY arrived the day before the signing.  My husband and I braved the rain to head downtown to hear Lisa speak and have my new book signed.  The picture's a little blurry -- I didn't even think of bringing a real camera with me, so I had to make do with my cell phone camera.  But at least I have proof that we met!

Lisa talked about how she came up with the storyline (it's loosely based on her cousin's son's story) as well as her writing process for creating a story about autism.  I returned home from the signing eager to jump in and devour another incredible story.

Love Anthony is different from her other books, which is perhaps why I didn't love the story as much as I had hoped that I would.  Both of her other books were very medically-driven storylines, and the reader really learns a lot about the subject material through Lisa's incredible way of breaking down neuroscience so that it's accessible for the average reader (i.e. me, who doesn't have a scientific bone in my body).  But Love Anthony is definitely more of a feelings story, as one woman struggles to come to terms with the death of her autistic son while another woman struggles to come to terms with the end of her marriage.  Both women's stories are told in alternating chapters and we learn, slowly, how their lives are destined to come together.  Usually I love stories where the characters end up meeting, and there's a great tying together of the plot, but Love Anthony just felt ... a little forced at times.  This may be due to the fact that I was expecting more from the book but the story just didn't wow me as much as her previous two books did.  With that being said, it's still a great story and full of heartfelt emotions.  I'm glad that I met Lisa and had the opportunity to hear her speak about her writing process and her personal connections to the story, as that experience definitely helped me to love the story a little bit more.

4 comments:

  1. I promise I am not negating the fact that there is excitement and a review up there, but I am stuck on how freakin' adorable you are! Look at youuuuu! Aww, you're so cute and adorable pregnant. Hope you're doing well, friend! :)

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    1. Magan -- you absolutely just made my NIGHT. I was a little nervous, posting a picture of myself, but you just made it all worth it. Thank YOU, friend, for being such a wonderful person! Big, squishy Canadian hugs to you xoxo

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  2. I'm so jealous you go to meet Lisa Genova! I absolutely loved this book! I can totally see why it wasn't your favorite - I have other bookish friends who have felt the same way. I LOVE reading about autism, especially in a fiction context, so I think that's why I devoured this book in one sitting. It was definitely different than her previous two books, and a little slower paced, but for me, it just worked.

    And yay for a photo! You're so tiny and cute! Now I no longer have your blogger header cartoon lady in my head when we talk on twitter :)

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    1. Aww, thanks Brie! I'm much less tiny now -- this picture is over a month old and the bump just keeps getting bigger!

      I generally enjoy books on autism (LOVED The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, and also enjoyed Jodi Picoult's book on autism ... title's escaping me). There were definitely more things that I enjoyed than didn't enjoy, but I think I'm sometimes disappointed when I expect a book to be better than it is, which is totally my own fault for reading rave reviews before picking it up =P I'll definitely still read whatever Lisa Genova writes -- she's such an amazing storyteller!

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