Title: In Her Wake
Author: Nancy Rappaport
Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Nancy Rappaport was 4 years old when her mother committed suicide. Her parents were embroiled in a bitter custody battle at the time, with the courts siding with her father in the most recent battle before she killed herself. The story is about Rappaport trying to find closure in the death of her mom, seeking out anything to understand her mother’s mind and why she committed suicide. It is a mini-biography of her mom, her father, her family, and herself. It is a daughter trying to put together the pieces of her mother’s life.
For me, I never felt like I got a true picture of Nancy’s mother. I learned a lot about Nancy herself, her parenting styles, and how she and her siblings learned to cope without their mother. While there was exploration into her mother’s past and how she came to meet Nancy’s father and raise her children, there seemed to be more of an emphasis on how the family coped afterward. It makes sense, though, since the author was just four when her mother passed, but judging by the subtitle, I was expecting to have a clearer picture of her mother.
This was the type of story you would have to read in bits and pieces. The author’s writing style is very good and easy to read, but there is a lot of information to digest. It’s the type of book you have to read a little at a time, process, then pick up again in a few days. There was a lot of clinical information that I found interesting, but I imagine it just might be too much for some people.
In the end, it was a good book but I wouldn’t shelve it among my favorites. It tended to get very wordy in parts. If you’re a fan of non-fiction and memoirs, it’s a good pick for a book chock-full of anecdotes and information, especially involving suicide and how a family copes with the aftermath.
I received this book for free from TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. All words and opinions are my own.