Long Way Back: A Novel, by Brendan Halpin.
i bought this book a year or more ago based on a recommendation in a review (in some magazine). of all the fiction i’ve read in the past month or so, this was BY FAR my favorite.
the book is narrated by the sister of an adult male (i’m always impressed when a male author can write convincingly from a female narrator’s perspective) who meets, marries, then loses an amazing wife to cancer. really the book is about his “long way back” to life, through and semi-out of a deep and massive grieving process.
as an added bonus, the brother is a catholic youth worker who mostly loses his faith through this process. but the narrating sister keeps her faith (so it’s not a slam on religion or faith). there’s a good splash of punk rock and band stuff thrown in the mix, which added fun. lots of great reflections on dying and death (the sister is also a hospice nurse), grief, families, faith, healing, and how events can completely redirect our lives.
i highly recommend this great book!