Vintage £8.99 (308pp) from the Independent Bookshop: 08430 600 030
Eating Pomegranates, By Sarah Gabriel
Friday 10 September 2010
Sadly so prevalent in recent years, the cancer memoir has seldom scaled the heights of eloquence or the depths of understanding that Sarah Gabriel brings to this book. Her breast cancer derived from a heritable mutation, M18T.
So this story of family history and personal odyssey has an almost Hardy-like quality of destiny foretold, as Gabriel fears that "I am going to die, as my mother did before me", and considers her two daughters' fate.
But she has the precious gift of moving between the emotional ordeal of the disease and the genetic traffic behind it – the science and the soul – without reductionism on either side.
Brave and graceful, this noble bid to navigate "a world of complexity" triumphs with, rather than over, adversity.
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Art Megumi Igarashi criticises Japan's 'backwards' attitude to women's sexual expression
Ray Davies' Sunny Afternoon scoops the most awardsTheatre
Grace DentChannel 4 show proves there's no app for happiness
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Alan Rickman admits editing 'terrible' script with friends in Pizza Hut behind backs of writers on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
- 2 18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
- 3 US? China? India? The 10 biggest economies in 2030 will be...
- 4 'I wish my teacher knew...': Young students share their 'heartbreaking' worries in notes
- 5 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling