Friday, March 23, 2018

Left Neglected by Lisa Genova

Because I enjoyed the novel, Still Alice, I purchased Lisa Genova's Left Neglected, and I found it interesting. Published in 2011, Left Neglected is the fictional story of Sarah Nickerson, an incredibly busy mother of three who also has a demanding career. She multitasks herself into a brain injury that steals her ability to recognize the left side of her body.

This real condition is called Left Neglect.  I have two children who have suffered brain injuries, so I find this incredibly interesting. My children do not have left neglect, but reading about brain injuries helps me understand my own children a little better. A person with left neglect may not see anything on the left side, including their own body parts or food on a plate.

 So the food on the left side of the plate won't be eaten because it isn't seen.
A person with left neglect may not see their left side - it ceases to exist.

In Genova's book, Sarah must figure out how to function after her injury. This is hard because she is perfectionist, and that is no longer possible, but she must find a way to continue her life. I struggled to like Sarah, but by the end of the book, I understood more why she was the way she was. She struggled to love herself because of childhood losses and dysfunction in her home, which in turn made her unlikeable in many ways.

Genova's writing is always well researched. I appreciate the time and effort she makes to get it right.

Link to our NICU book registry if you'd like to donate books to babies in the newborn intensive care unit so their parents can read to them while they grow. You can also donate gently used books to our project by sending them to me or to Angie. Email me for a mailing address. We can use both English and Spanish books. If you have a graduate of the NICU, or if you have a baby whose life you would like to honor by donating books to this project, let me know, and I can make a book plate with their name for the books you donate.

Another way to help our project is to purchase books from this Usborne link as we are currently using the hostess benefits to help buy books for the babies. You buy books that are delivered to your house for your children or grandchildren - or as baby shower gifts, and the hostess rewards help us get books for our NICU babies - a win win for all. 

Read to a child today even if that child is you. 

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