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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Before I Go

ISBN: 9781476761664
Publisher: Gallery, Threshold, Pocket
Publication Date: 01/06/2015
Format: Other
My Rating: 5 Stars
Debut Novel
A heart-wrenching debut novel in the bestselling tradition of P.S. I Love You about a young woman with breast cancer who undertakes a mission to find a new wife for her husband before she passes away.
Twenty-seven-year-old Daisy already beat breast cancer three years ago. How can this be happening to her again? On the eve of what was supposed to be a triumphant “Cancerversary” with her husband Jack to celebrate three years of being cancer-free, Daisy suffers a devastating blow: her doctor tells her that the cancer is back, but this time it’s an aggressive stage four diagnosis. She may have as few as four months left to live.
Death is a frightening prospect—but not because she’s afraid for herself. She’s terrified of what will happen to her brilliant but otherwise charmingly helpless husband when she’s no longer there to take care of him. It’s this fear that keeps her up at night, until she stumbles on the solution: she has to find him another wife.
With a singular determination, Daisy scouts local parks and coffee shops and online dating sites looking for Jack’s perfect match. But the further she gets on her quest, the more she questions the sanity of her plan. As the thought of her husband with another woman becomes all too real, Daisy’s forced to decide what’s more important in the short amount of time she has left: her husband’s happiness—or her own?

My Review

A special thank you to Gallery Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Delighted to discover this new Atlanta southern author, Colleen Oakley! If this is a debut, can't wait to see what is next. BEFORE I GO is a poignant, novel of love and loss, mixed with humor and emotion, keeping you glued to the pages-to learn the fate of lovable Daisy. Daisy Richmond is still in her twenties, and has had cancer before; she and her much loved husband, Jack have gotten past the fear and each year they celebrate another year of cancer-free remission. Jack is a veterinary student and will be graduating soon. The couple have big plans to create a family with dreams for the future, as most young married couples. When Daisy receives the devastating news her cancer has returned, they will not be celebrating. She begins worrying how Jack will survive without her in his life, for the future. She is very organized and runs a tight household, and has always been there for Jack in every way. She becomes obsessed with finding Jack his next wife. While she is going through her fears, and concerns, trying all sorts of trial drugs and therapy to extend her life; instead of enjoying her precious time with her husband, she is moody and withdrawn, while addicted to finding the perfect replacement wife. When things start looking like her plan is working, she gets afraid, jealous and possessive. Colleen writes a beautiful and emotional novel, with nice character development, and enough suspense to keep readers guessing what is up, with Jack. She creates the right amount of humor mixed with the tragedy and illness, told with compassion. I enjoyed the sassy and honest relationship with her best friend, Kayleigh-a nice touch; and a likable and supportive husband. While personally understanding the emotions surrounding cancer, as my mom has been battling for a year with ups and down with chemo, treatment, side effects, complications, and not always receiving the hopeful and positive news from ongoing scans and tests. A thought-provoking takeaway for readers, to treasure time with loved ones, while we can. A riveting and compelling debut, fans of The Replacement Wife,by Eileen Goudge, as well as authors, Jojo Moyes, Jane Green, Emily Giffin, Jennifer Weiner, and Liane Moriarty will enjoy Oakley's unique style, with insights into today’s contemporary women, marriage, and relationships. Highly recommend, and look forward to reading more!
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