Book: The Memory of Loss by Dana K. Haffarcategories: Book, Betrayal, War, Delusions, Loss, PTSD, Complicated Grief, Romance, Loyalty, Love, Self-Deceit, Contemporary Women's Fiction
Dana K. Haffarabout this book: Reeling from a devastating tragedy she believes she has caused, nineteen-year-old Nadine Hall has lived an illusion rather than face a brutal reality. Eager to make a fresh start, she lands a dream job as a carer for an archaeologist near Cannes - the perfect location for the movie buff that she is - shortly before the film festival is due to be held. The blissful existence she finds among her charge, Lilly Somerville, Lilly's sister Viv who suffers from dementia, and Agnes the housekeeper is soon shattered with the arrival of Lilly's only daughter, Katrina, who wants Nadine gone. As the implications of losing her job and being sent home are greater than anyone can imagine, Nadine will do anything to outsmart Katrina and win her charge's favour. When she happens upon Lilly's account of her life in German-occupied Paris, she banks on using it to her advantage.
"The Memory of Loss" explores the harm in self-deceit if it makes us happy. Whether it is by deception, self-delusion, or denial, each of the protagonists deals with adversity in her own fashion. In order to achieve this, I had a troubled young woman, Nadine Hall, who has lived an insular life venture out in a world where she finds herself out of her depth. The WWII element in the novel conjures up dark times where people's morality and understanding of their dire circumstances are challenged, forcing them to resort to whatever coping methods they can manage.
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