Kuipers’s haunting debut unfolds like a flip book of half-drawn images too swiftly ended, a compilation of tantalizing notes posted on a refrigerator by a single working mom and Claire-bear, her wistful teen daughter.
Bittersweet, funny and achingly real, the nameless mother (an overworked obstetrician) and bubbly Claire communicate through these notes instead of talking, e-mailing or text messaging.
Missives range from the daughter’s plainly impassioned (Hi MOM! (Who I never see anymore EVER!)) to her mother’s soothing, tough-upper-lip responses written during her breast cancer treatment.
Kuipers captures the anxiety surrounding tragedy and conveys the importance of fully experiencing life. Although the format has its limits (notably in character development and narrative momentum), Kuipers delivers a strong, emotional reminder about the importance of loved ones, even through times of unceasing complications and challenges. (Sept.)
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