Book: Don't Tell Anyone by Laurie Boriscategories: Book, Contemporary Fiction, Women's Fiction, Family Secrets, Marital Strain, Literary Fiction, Healthy Cooking, End-of-Life Choices, Assisted Suicide, Sibling Rivalry, Brothers, Mother-in-Law Problems, Breast Cancer
Laurie Borisabout this book: I was inspired to write Don't Tell Anyone following an incident that happened in my extended family. My mother-in-law had breast cancer and chose to it keep it secret until she was "outed" during an emergency room visit for another condition. Because she was unconscious, a tech called us in and asked how long she'd had the tumors. To say my husband and I were stunned was a ridiculous understatement. We all dealt with it as best we could, but questions kept roiling around in my head, mainly about how someone with medical insurance, good facilities only a few miles from her home, and family nearby could ignore something so serious.
So as I often do with difficult questions, I gave the problem to some fictional characters and let them figure out how to handle it. We were just heading into November at the time, and I'd planned to do NaNoWriMo that year. This was the story I wrote. Of course, I did a few more drafts, revised, redrafted, and let it develop into a novel, but during that time, the basic "core" of the story remained the same: how does a family handle this? Especially the fictional Trager family, who was already coming into this situation with a whole lot of dust bunnies swept under the rug. To what lengths will this family go to help their mother? Can they keep it together long enough to do so? And what if she refuses their help? Each character comes at this with his or her own ideas about what the "proper" course of action should be, and the humor and compassion flows from how they try to work it all out. Don't Tell Anyone was the literary fiction winner of The Kindle Book Review's 2013 Best Indie Book Awards.
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