Left Neglected is the newly released novel by Lisa Genova author of Still Alice. I have not read the first one, but quite honestly if it is anything like the new one, I am going to put it on my Goodreads –to read – list. Maybe Goodreads should make a new designation, -must read-, to make things easier. Genova seems to have a thing about brains and the injury that can come to them, in Still Alice she tackles Alzheimer’s, in Left Neglected she goes after brain injury via auto accident that leaves our main character without the use of the left side of her brain. Here are the particulars of the novel:
“Sarah Nickerson is like any other career-driven supermom in Welmont, the affluent Boston suburb where she leads a hectic but charmed life with her husband Bob, faithful nanny, and three children—Lucy, Charlie, and nine-month-old Linus.
Between recruiting the best and brightest minds as the vice president of human resources at Berkley Consulting; shuttling the kids to soccer, day care, and piano lessons; convincing her son’s teacher that he may not, in fact, have ADD; and making it home in time for dinner, it’s a wonder this over-scheduled, over-achieving Harvard graduate has time to breathe.
A self-confessed balloon about to burst, Sarah miraculously manages every minute of her life like an air traffic controller. Until one fateful day, while driving to work and trying to make a phone call, she looks away from the road for one second too long. In the blink of an eye, all the rapidly moving parts of her jam-packed life come to a screeching halt.
A traumatic brain injury completely erases the left side of her world, and for once, Sarah relinquishes control to those around her, including her formerly absent mother. Without the ability to even floss her own teeth, she struggles to find answers about her past and her uncertain future.
Now, as she wills herself to regain her independence and heal, Sarah must learn that her real destiny—her new, true life—may in fact lie far from the world of conference calls and spreadsheets. And that a happiness and peace greater than all the success in the world is close within reach, if only she slows down long enough to notice.”
I like the concept and execution of the plotline, Genova follows through with it very well and delivers a very touching, gripping novel. The heartstrings get pulled often and the title although in one way is very literal can be taken in many ways, I really like that. The medical jargon at times goes a bit too far but I can’t help but admire the amount of research she did to prepare for the novel. Overall I would suggest reading this novel if for nothing else other than the different perspective. It allows the reader to gain to a perspective as to what and can be very important in one’s life and the variety of positive choices that can be made with regards to family and quality of life, the basic important things that come free and can’t be bought.
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