Friday, April 4, 2008

Remembering the Bones by Frances Itani

In Remembering the Bones, Georgie has been invited to dine with the Queen of England because they share the same birthday. As she drives to the airport, she loses control of her car and ends up at the bottom of a ravine. She has been thrown from the car and is seriously hurt. As she lies there assessing her physical condition, she recounts events that shaped her life including memorizing the bones of the body using her grandfather’s copy of Grey’s Anatomy.

Essentially this novel is the story of one woman’s life. Each chapter is named for a bone in the human body and loosely relates to that part of the body. I think it’s very cleverly done and I loved it. Itani’s writing is breathtaking, her storytelling superb and her characters wonderful and believable. Her books are such a joy to read. Her characters interact with their environment and events appropriate to the time period in which the story is set. That makes them all the more real.

The last 50 pages or so were so hard for me to get through, but I adored every single word of the ending. I cried my eyes out. Not the “few-tears-I’ll-get-over-it-in-5-minutes” type of cry. This was a “gut-wrenching-all-out-bawl-I-still-felt-days-later” type of cry. These characters will stick with me for a long time.

This is my second book by Itani. While I loved Deafening, I loved this one more. I think it was the character of Georgie that did it for me. She was wonderful.

Highly recommended. I’ll be looking for more of Itani’s work.

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