Alice & Oliver

Alice & Oliver

Book - 2016
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"Alice Culvert is a force: passionate, independent, smart, and gorgeous, she--to her delight--attracts attention wherever she goes, even amid the buzz of mid-90s New York. In knee-high boots, with her newborn daughter, Doe, strapped to her chest, Alice is one of those people who just seem so vividly alive, which makes her cancer diagnosis feel almost incongruous. How could such a being not go on? But all at once, Alice's existence, and that of her husband Oliver, is reduced to a single purpose: survival. As they combat the disease, the couple must also face off against the serpentine healthcare system, the good intentions of loved ones, and the deep, dangerous stressors that threaten to push the two of them apart. With veracity, humor, wisdom, and love, Charles Bock navigates one family's unforgettable story - inspired by his own"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Random House, [2016]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9781400068388
Branch Call Number: Fiction Bock
Characteristics: 399 pages ; 25 cm


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Oct 29, 2018

Eh. Characters weren't likeable enough for me to care about what happened to any of them. I could Alice would be the kind of woman I can't stand and would just roll my eyes at constantly. Oliver's just a bit pathetic. The Merv character was written very poorly. The book goes on for 300 hundred pages about her cancer and then wraps up, cures, and sends her home in the last 10 pages (not counting the completely unnecessary epilogue. ) I understand how writing this novel would have been therapeutic for the author, but I think it would have been a much more impactful story if he had written the true events of his wife's battle. Completed 25/10/18.

Oct 08, 2016

I slogged through 100 pages of this very depressing book before I just couldn't read anymore. I'd like to think that the subject matter hit a little too close to home for me, as I lost my beloved sister to cancer last year. But in reality, sadly, it was more the author's poor writing skills. The characters seemed like cardboard cutouts dealing with every obstacle imaginable, in their fight to save her life.
I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone.

Aug 22, 2016

Cathartic thoughts expressed on stem cell transplants based on author's life experience.

Could have been better written in 300 pages or less (400 as is) - many unnecessary case studies, trips to the past, and other memorabilia irrelevant to main plot. Under-developed sections on relationships but overdevelopment on surrounding circumstances.

Cover is not inspiring and does not reflect depth of book.

Do not understand why it takes place in 1993 when author lived through this in 2009-2010 - medical references have been superseded in past 20 years. I accompanied someone through a stem cell transplant in 2010 and it was nothing like this was described.

The one line I have noted for future reference for issues between couples: you can be right or we can be married! THAT is worth saving!

Jul 29, 2016

A Librarian once told me that if you can't get into the story at page 50 , then forget it. I struggled through this one dimensional tripe to page 50 before thumbing through some other pages. This must have been therapy for the author, from a diary he may have kept. He should have taken a better class in writing.

athompson10 Jun 16, 2016

Wow. A love story, the story of a marriage and the story of a woman fighting cancer all in one. If you've ever gone through chemo or witnessed a loved one's battle with cancer up close, this book will ring true. Some of it is almost unbearably grim and wrenching, but it's a sad beautiful story.

ChristchurchLib May 15, 2016

In this riveting, emotional book, a dynamic young woman -- a fashion designer, wife, and new mother -- is struck down by a mysterious and hard-hitting illness that turns out to be leukemia. As her brutal treatment progresses, what had been a happy, strong marriage is weakened by her physical deterioration, a labyrinthine healthcare system, and fear. From the very beginning, the heart-wrenching narrative will enthrall, so realistic is the depiction -- with good reason, as author Charles Bock writes from personal experience.


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