Underneath almost unbearably banal similes, I found The Art of Forgetting to be an unexpectedly good story. Camille Noe Pagan takes the issue of traumatic brain injury and weaves it into the lives of two best friends, showing us the impact of such a condition on a lifetime of loyalty.
When Julia is hit by a taxi cab in New York City, on her way to lunch with her best friend, Marissa, neither of them fully understand the impact that it will have on their lives. Julia becomes forgetful, childish in many ways, and loses a filter when it comes to expressing her thoughts or feelings. But, she doesn’t forget a deep, underlying guilt she’s been carrying after giving Marissa advice almost a decade ago.
Marissa accepted that advice. And now she must accept the change in her friend, while finding acceptance for herself. Despite her mother’s critical spirit, or the attentions of Nathan, her long-time-ago boyfriend, Marissa knows that she has to find the job that makes her happy, and the right man for whom she is destined to be married.
The two friends learn to balance their needs with one another’s, and in so doing cause the reader to examine the following questions: Is it fair to put one’s expectations on another? What happens when one sacrifices her heart’s desire for her friend’s wishes? Can mistakes in the past be corrected in the present?
Indeed. Swans will actually try to drown each other if they’re angry enough. People admire their beauty and their devotion, but they’re certainly not the animal whose social patterns we’d be wise to emulate. Unlike humans, they’re unable to learn the art of forgetting. (p. 205)
For certainly, to live successfully in this life, Pagan reminds us that we must acquire that skill.
The publisher is offering one copy to readers, U.S. and Canada only, please. Simply leave a comment to be entered into the drawing from which I will pull one name a week from today.
Find other thoughts about this book here:
Monday, June 6th: Luxury Reading
Tuesday, June 7th: Book Club Classics!
Wednesday, June 8th: Book Addiction
Thursday, June 9th: That’s What She Read
Friday, June 10th: Life in the Thumb
Monday, June 13th: Rundpinne
Tuesday, June 14th: The Brain Lair
Wednesday, June 15th: Book Hooked Blog
Thursday, June 16th: Library of Clean Reads
Monday, June 20th: Peeking Between the Pages
Tuesday, June 21st: BookNAround
Wednesday, June 22nd: Books, Movies, and Chinese Food
Thursday, June 23rd: 2 Kids and Tired
Monday, June 27th: Stiletto Storytime
Tuesday, June 28th: The Well-Read Wife
Wednesday, June 29th: Bookworm with a View
Thursday, June 30th: Unabridged Chick