By Rachel Khong
Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong
What’s it about?
Ruth is 30-years-old and has just been left by her fiancé. Feeling unmoored she goes home for the holidays for the first time in years. Ruth tells her story in diary form and it is equally parts hilarious, sad, and insightful.
What did it make me think about?
This slim novel makes you think about all the big subjects- family, aging, relationships. The harsh reality of dementia, and the difficulties it presents to so many families, is highlighted beautifully in this book by Amy Engle. This novel runs the gamut- but what sets it apart is the humor found along side the grief!
Should I read it?
This one quietly snuck up on me. It is such a small book and at first you are just struck with Ruth’s voice as a narrator.“For a long time on the freeway I trail a chicken truck that rains white feathers onto my windshield . I try to windshield -wipe them, which only results in their getting stuck in the wipers and moving enchantingly.”She sees things clearly, but in a much different way than most. Somewhere during the second half of the novel I realized just how beautiful this book was. I would highly recommend this one!
“An hour today, you spent shouting. You said we’d stolen money from you. You threw your pillows over the fence and into the Grovers’ pool. You broke the legs off of your dining table chair. You smashed almost all of our drinking glasses.
In a matter of days, lung had said, it can go from manageable to scary.”