I expected a very difficult read that would take several days because of my reluctance to pick the book up when I put it down but what a shock when I started reading it. I could not put it down. What a story! Naturally I started judging immediately as Ms. Pomerantz meets Charles who would become her husband. Signs were there that made me question where was her mind but as the story unfolds the reader is shown what a marriage to a narcissist is like. We are shown how good the narcissist is at manipulation and how the victim questions herself--is she the crazy one? I wondered how she could stay but as she explains what is happening I am amazed she did not kill him. As she tells us when she is diagnosed with cancer she has neither the ability (energy/time/health) nor the money to leave as she was on his insurance and not working at the time. Thankfully she had great friends who were there to support and help her as well as making new friends to see her through this time. I am amazed how her friends were able to keep their mouths shut for so long about Charles' emotional abuse towards her. When they do tell her their opinions, all have the same opinion.
When she finally realizes she has to leave, she still hopes for reconciliation but Charles is so far gone that there is no hope to regain what she once thought they had. I like that once she determined to leave, she had the support of friends and her father (Poppy.) Her father was super great. Though he was not in the story long, he is a tower of strength. He does what has to been done for his daughter and her children. The children were also supportive of her. There were some shaky times but when they finally leave and get to their new home, life changes drastically. They are in a neighborhood with other kids and they have a different childhood then. As I read the story I did not get very emotional as she is going through Charles' behavior and the cancer but towards the end with Poppy I bawled. I appreciated the young doctor who was with him and gave Diane such words of encouragement and inspiration.
The writing is so wonderful that I was absorbed into the story. I appreciate that she wrote it as a memoir and not a novel. The impact of it was strong. This is a definite read for everyone whether you are in a marriage like this or not. I learned so much.