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You Lost Me There

A book by Rosecrans Baldwin

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What happens when your memories can't be trusted?

  • Sep 20, 2010
Rating:
+4
I found this story, about an Alzheimer's researcher and the wife he lost in a car accident, not only interesting but touching. It is not a happy story nor, for me, was it a weepy one. At it's core, it was the story of a man who knows all about the brain but little about emotion. In fact, a wounded ex-girlfriend accuses him of having "Alzheimer's of the emotions."

Victor spent his life so consumed with his work that the rest of his life went on without him; except he doesn't realize it. He thinks he had a good life and a happy (if sometimes troubled) marriage. After his wife dies in an accident, he finds notes she had left behind--not TO him, but ABOUT him--an exercise assigned by a marriage counseler they'd seen in the past.

Through these cards, Victor realizes that his life, his wife, his marriage...none of it was what he thought it was. Here, this expert in the brain and its memories comes to the jarring realization that his recollections about his wife, Sara, their marriage and particular events in their lives may not be accurate. This revelation, as well as some of the profoundly hurtful things Sara says about him on the cards, shake him to the core and magnify the grief of her loss.

I usually have a hard time getting through a book where some characters are so unlikeable but, for whatever reason, that didn't bother me much in this book (though Aunt Betsy did get on my nerves). Unlike a lot of books I've read this year, the cast of characters here is blessedly short--only about half a dozen. They are all colorful and flawed characters--some more than others.

The writing is quite good, and keeps the story flowing very well. I never had a problem staying interested in this story--I was always eager to pick it up from the nightstand. Be prepared for this story to make you think about whether your relationships are really as they seem.

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Sheri ()
Ranked #68
I have been a customer reviewer on Amazon.com for well over a decade and an Amazon Vine reviewer since the program began. I enjoy writing product reviews that will help customers make a buying decision. … more
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About this book

Wiki

A famed neuroscientist learns potent lessons about the fallibility of memory in Baldwin's underwhelming debut, a highbrow melodrama that stretches for resonance and is narrated by noted Alzheimer's researcher Dr. Victor Aaron, who works at a small but prestigious Maine lab and grieves the death of his screenwriter wife, Sara. Victor finds a series of note cards that recount key moments in their 33-year marriage, but Victor's memories of the same events are either missing or differ, and it becomes clear there were longstanding issues in the marriage--notably that Victor felt threatened by Sara's success and wasn't supportive of her work. Victor does the normal confused and grieving middle-aged man things--becomes fixated on his laments, takes a younger lover--and eventually finds himself hosting his goddaughter, Cornelia, who inadvertently provides the clue that allows Victor to discover Sara's final, unfinished screenplay. Sara's perspective--here limited to her note cards--is affecting and provides the novel its best moments. Unfortunately, readers are stuck for the most part with Victor, whose unsympathetic culpability and fundamental blandness sap narrative energy and make much of the novel feel like filler.
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Details

ISBN-10: 1594487634
ISBN-13: 978-1594487637
Author: Rosecrans Baldwin
Publisher: Riverhead Hardcover

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