A Year After Henry by Cathie Pelletier

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I think it is a home truth that we don’t really know how much we and our lives are impacted by certain people in our lives until we have to do without them. The death of Henry leaves ripples of waves in the lives of his family members, the local community, the people he connected with and the ones he kept hidden in the wings.

It is a year after his death and everyone is still trying to fill the gaps left by the sudden departure of Henry. His brother Larry is struggling to find his place after losing his wife and son after a nasty divorce. In his odd search for comfort he happens to find himself attracted to the one person, who has the ability to destroy what is left of his family.

Jeannie is obsessed with the secret life Henry had. She has this strange need to know why, and why that particular person. She spends her time placing the blame firmly on the living instead of on the dead.

Pelletier has also woven an important sub-plot into this story of loss, sorrow and guilt. The issue of domestic abuse and violent partners. The most important point the author makes is the way the abused is often treated like a liar, especially by other women when the abused is a woman. The abuser is more often than not a charming two-faced popular person, the type who doesn’t fit the criteria of abuser in most people’s heads.

Why is it so hard to believe someone in that kind of situation? Why does it have to happen again before someone steps in to help? What is it about abuse that make the abuser warrant more support and protection than the abused?

This is a tale of grief and how life goes on after the death of a loved one.

I received a copy of this book via NetGalley.

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