Friday, April 27, 2012

Review: Surviving Emily by Laurie Bellesheim

Surviving Emily by Laurie Bellesheim

Publisher: Dog Ear Publishing 
Pages: 232 
Format: eARC 
Buy the Book: Amazon 

Goodreads:  Abigail Hooper and Stephen Sparks had never heard of Sudden Unexplained Death in Epilepsy until one fatal morning in November when it crushed their hopes and dreams. Twelve years after the devastating loss of their dearest friend Emily, they find themselves still affected by the trauma. 

Abigail, married and newly pregnant, helps others through her work for the Department of Children and Families. When a new client with epilepsy unexpectedly forces her to re-examine the past, Abigail realizes she's the one who needs saving. Stephen has struggled emotionally, physically and spiritually after losing the love of his life, and the long-term effects of his grief have kept him from truly living and finding love again. 

As the two search for redemption and the power to heal, their paths cross once again. Emily's presence so long ago still has meaning in their own lives, teaching them the meaning of true friendship and what's really important. Drawing on her own experience with a close friend with epilepsy who died, author Laurie Bellesheim raises awareness about the disease in this compelling tale told partially through flashbacks. 

Kritters Thoughts:  Losing a friend or loved one at a young age can greatly alter one's life course and even send them on a different path.  Best friends Stephen and Abigail lost a best friend and a girl friend one morning when Emily was found dead from Sudden Death related to her disease epilepsy.  At first these two friends clung to each other in hopes to help each other cope with the loss, but suddenly their friendship came to a screaming halt.

Told through both friends perspectives, this book was heart wrenching because the reader really feels these friends pain with losing someone so close.  I absolutely loved how the story weaved in and out.  There was an ease to the reading which made the book even more enjoyable.  A few side story lines didn't jumble the book at all, it added depth to these two characters and gave their lives a fullness.  

I would pass this book onto any kind of reader.  There was heart and soul for those readers who need a emotion, but the reading was simple for the reader who doesn't like a hard read.  I will be watching out for what comes next from Laurie Bellesheim.

Rating:  absolutely loved it and want a sequel

Ebook Challenge 2012: 19 out of 25 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Women's Literary Cafe.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

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