Thank you to NetGalley.com and to the publisher for the ARC of this novel in exchange for my honest review.
While reading this novel, I immediately found parallels with a book I read and reviewed earlier this year that was about Huntington’s Disease, “Inside the O’Briens.” The Things We Keep tackles the horrible disease of Alzheimer’s by introducing us to Anna, who is facing this disease as a woman under 40. Watching Anna move from an educated, worldly woman with a biting tongue and love of life to a fragile, physically broken woman who is fighting to maintain her grasp on the simple things in life – her vocabulary, her ability to function, and her memories of people is heart breaking, but the relationship she creates with Luke is beautiful on all levels.
What I loved: The other residents of the care facility have such a vital role in the lives of Anna, Eve and Clem. They provide wisdom, insight, laughter, and sadness - just as the elderly do in our own lives. Clara and Laurie show how love can persevere through sixty years of marriage up until the absolute end.
What I didn’t love: Of course, there are the characters who you just hate in any novel – Miranda and Eric easily come to mind to fill this role but Andrea is the absolute worst. She’s a mom with such blinders on to her own child its almost comedic.
What I learned: Love is a basic instinct that transcends all.