Title: Nearer Than The Sky Author: T. Greenwood Paperback; 321 pages Publisher: Kensington
When Indie Brown was four years old, she was struck by lightning. In the oft-told version of the story, Indie’s life was heroically saved by her mother. But Indie’s own recollection of the event, while hazy, is very different. Most of Indie’s childhood memories are like this—tinged with vague, unsettling images and suspicions. Her mother, Judy, fussed over her pretty youngest daughter, Lily, as much as she ignored Indie. That neglect, coupled with the death of her beloved older brother, is the reason Indie now lives far away in rural Maine. It’s why her relationship with Lily is filled with tension, and why she dreads the thought of flying back to Arizona. But she has no choice. Judy is gravely ill, and Lily, struggling with a challenge of her own, needs her help. In Arizona, faced with Lily’s hysteria and their mother’s instability, Indie slowly begins to confront the truth about her half-remembered past and the legacy that still haunts her family. And as she revisits her childhood, with its nightmares and lost innocence, she finds she must reevaluate the choices of her adulthood—including her most precious relationships.
Indie Brown may have just died when she was young, but her mother prevented that after she got struck by lightning. Since then, things were never the same again. Tried as she might to remember what happened, the only thing she see now is a different kind of treatment. Whatever Indie thought about her mother was changed when she came back to their childhood home, after learning about her mom’s grave illness. She couldn’t believe what she realized – her own mother might just have been the one causing harm to her own children, and it seemed that Lily, her sister was doing the same to her own kid. This is my first time to read a story about the mental disorder, Munchausen Syndrome. I haven’t ever heard about it even before I read this book. Now, I feel that I should research and know more about this sickness. This had been a heavy and emotional read, I didn’t know first how to react. As a mom to three kids, I could never, in a million years, think of doing harm to my own flesh and blood. But after reading this book about a mom suffering from a mental illness, I couldn’t help but cry and shake my head. But storywise, this had been a well-written one, full of compassion, hope, understanding and appreciation. T. Greenwood is a passionate and talented storyteller and I’d love to read more of her other books!