Updated: Mar 20, 2021
Title: Minus Me
Author: Mameve Medwed
Publish date: 12th January 2021
Source: Book Sirens
What a little gem of a book! I really enjoyed this one, it was a lovely simple story which I found really easy to read. It left me with a wave of heart warming happiness at the end. I was in need of an easy pick me up story that I could inhale in a few days. This one didn't disappoint!
I was given a selection of books to choose from at BookSirensUk and this one jumped out at me. I loved the sound of the story, it sounded such an interesting premise.
Minus Me is the tale of Annie Stevens-Strauss, devoted wife of Sam. From childhood sweethearts to owners of 'Annie's Samwich' a renowned shop in the heart of Passamaquoddy, Maine. Her story begins in a devastating way, she is given the life changing news that she has lung cancer and will not have long to live. She understandably is hit hard by the news and has to try to figure out what to do with this information. She decides against telling the love of her life, her soul mate and husband Sam, as she doesn't want to destroy him too. She knows he won't be able to cope with the news or with life without her. Instead she decides to create a 'User guide to life minus me' to help soften the blow. Her husband Sam is quite inept to say the least (at times I grew a little irritated by his haplessness and childlike tantrums but this was fairly pertinent to the story so I moved past it) It makes sense that she would want to spare him from having to deal with this news straight away.
What follows is a heart warming story of love, secrets, loss and family ties. I thought this book was going to be a huge tear jerker from the get go but actually it was very uplifting and a lot of the plot lines and characters really made me laugh. They were relatable and humorous. I'll admit at times I just wanted to bang Annie and Sam's heads together, the secrecy began to get very frustrating and unrealistic but then the story would take another turn and I would feel a little more placated.
I particularly loved the side storyline of the mother-daughter relationship between Annie and Ursula. Ursula is such a bright and vibrant character, filling the pages with her exuberance. She is the type of person you would love to have in your life despite her driving you up the wall with her dramatic flair! This character plot line highlighted the reasons why Annie chose to live her life the way she did and what shaped her. The development of the different relationships in the story and the growth of the characters kept me entertained throughout. It highlights the fact that life really is too short and you should never put off to tomorrow what you can do today. Annie is a culprit of putting off a lot in the story but I think we can all be guilty of that from time to time!
Overall this character driven story was just lovely. I look forward to reading some more books by this author.
I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
About the author
Mameve Medwed is the author of five novels, Mail, Host family, The end of an error, the 2007 Massachusetts Honor book award-winning Hope Elizabeth Browning saved my life and Of men and their mothers. Born and raised in Bangor, Maine she now lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Find her official website here.