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Goodnight, Beautiful Paperback – September 28, 2010
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“A heartbreaking story . . . You’ll need tissues. 5 stars.”
Top Customer Reviews
This book frustrated me! The back cover provided a certain amount of information about the story: Mal and his wife, Stephanie, asked Nova to have a baby for them, but then changed their minds when Mal's wife found a text from Mal to Nova saying "goodnight beautiful". Nova was then forced to raise the baby she had meant them to have. I found Ms Koomson took an inordinate amount of time to unravel the story to that point of the action. There was something about the underlying tone of the tale that made me impatient to just know how the story resolved.
Ultimately, "Goodnight Beautiful" was painful and sad. A story of mental illness, the depths of human strength, the bonds that hold marriages together, and the deepest purest love that can exist between a man and a woman, though they may not be able to fuly realise it in their present lifetimes.
Of the four main characters of the book, Nova is the most interesting. She is smart, strong, and gifted. She loves the unfortunately named Mal (my old high school French taught me that mal meant sick or pain as in mal a la tete for headache). Mal marries the troubled Stephanie, bipolar, who eventually wants a baby. They ask Nova to carry a child for them, and bring Leo into the world. Stephanie's decision, and Mal's capitulation, were the turning points of the story, and lie at the heart of why I don't love this book. Mal, almost crippled with wanting to do the right thing, would never have made this decision. Everything following this becomes forced. While the author, Dorothy Koomson, pulls it together at the last minute for the ending, it is a sad ending.
There are no feel-good moments in this book at all. Koomson aimed for stark reality, and in some ways she totally missed the mark, and in others she hit it out of the ballpark. I give this book three stars because I am totally torn about liking and disliking it, and 2 ½ stars isn't an option.
This is a love story of the worst kind. A not so tender heart breaking love story of lifelong friends who share an undying and unconditional love for one another - but life happens. They did not just love each other, they were in love. The story defines what being "that someone" to another human looks like and feels like. How it appears on the outside to be the foundation and spark of another person's existence. Knowing without a shadow of a doubt that someone hears you, that someone sees you. That someone feels your blood as it courses through your veins, a true witness to your life. Just one touch of forever, and ever after all alone. And...she could not have him but was able to bear fruit from the tree of his life. And --- I'm back. Okay, I told you I was still in London and Portugal.
Many have reviewed this book, taken it apart because of the two female narrators going back and forth and the confusion as to who was speaking. In my opinion, these women were two different spirits and personalities, very easy to tell who was speaking. What no one covered, sadly, was little 7 year old Leo lying in a coma narrating his life as it flashes before his eyes (he is the small voice in italics) and how his mum guided him through without him ever being afraid or scared of the unknown. This wore me out - Nova wore me out! The book took some getting adjusted to, but it is clearly not an escape book, or a light and easy read, you have to be all-in.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Heart wrenching and emotional book. I would never have thought so but even I got a lump in my throat reading this, not from the beginning but the story builds and you can not... Read morePublished 3 months ago by The Belgian Reviewer
This was annoying on so many levels. The story, characters and writing style were irritating. The only reason I finished this book was because it was our book club book.Published 6 months ago by Michele
I found this book to be very depressing, the male lead character depicted as being noble but I deemed him a weakling hiding behind words. It was rather boring, too.Published 7 months ago by buttafinga
Beautifully written and heart wrenching! Reminds us that we don't always have to walk in someone else's shoes to feel their heartbreak.Published 8 months ago by Joan