Life, Death & Vanilla Slices – book review

November 22, 2012 · 10 comments

This book is going to stick with me for the rest of my life…I happened to be reading it on and off during the last few weeks of my mum’s life and I would tell her about it as in the past we always shared our books. Sadly for the last couple of months she wasn’t able to concentrate long enough to read and then as I held her hand in the last few hours of her life I finished the book, so it’s not one I am going to forget.

Anyhow…written by actress and comedian Jenny Eclair this could be described as a black comedy. Focusing on Jean, a widow, knocked down by a car and left in a coma and her snobby daughter Anne who begrudges having to travel back up North from Dulwich in London to sit at her mother’s bedside. Back at home Anne has two teenage sons and a husband that appears to have forgotten that Anne even exists. Of course there are the obligatory skeletons in everyone’s closet and twists and turns that at times are quite unexpected keeping the reader on their toes and completely engrossed in the story.

I found the book funny but I also found it gut wrenchingly poignant too…Anne’s teenage sons are awful and cruel and I could so empathise with her. I wanted to cry at times the book was so close to home. At times I wondered if Jenny Eclair had actually been spying on my life. I also went from loving to hating each character in turn and back again for various reasons.

This is a very clever book which will make you laugh and make you cry, it is so realistic and honest that I cried out at the cruelness of teens, husbands, mothers, sisters and at times my heart ached for the characters.

I highly recommend this book, it is an easy read that if nothing else will have you praying that your teenage sons don’t end up anywhere near as awful as Anne’s have.

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Amanda @gidders1 December 1, 2012 at 4:09 pm

I am so very sorry for your loss xx

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2 Nova December 7, 2012 at 7:43 pm

Thank you. x

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3 Penny November 29, 2012 at 2:48 am

I’m sorry to hear about your mum, will defo give this one a read.

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4 Nova November 29, 2012 at 8:45 pm

Thank you…let me know what you think of it

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5 Becky November 27, 2012 at 10:29 pm

Ah I’m sorry about your mum it hurts so much I know, Bless you love and take careof yourself x

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6 Nova November 29, 2012 at 8:45 pm

Thank you Becky x

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7 Gigi November 23, 2012 at 1:40 pm

I will add this one to my must-read list. Again, I’m so sorry for your loss. I’m keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers. xx

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8 Nova November 24, 2012 at 5:42 pm

Thank you…it really is a good book but I’d love to know what you think as it’s a very British humour. Let me know. X

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9 Style At Every Age November 23, 2012 at 9:12 am

I haven’t read a book for ages, never have time since I started the blog but I am drawn to this and am going to put it on my list. Life is so hard and teenagers are not easy whether girls or boys and it is often mum who takes the brunt of everything they are going through in life along with husbands insecurities etc. It’s not easy being a mum nor a daughter as our parents get old and we have to deal with our own families and sick parents. Thinking of you xxxx

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10 Nova November 24, 2012 at 5:42 pm

Let me know what you think of it. X

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