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It Rains In February: A Wife's Memoir of Love and Loss by [Summers, Leila]
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3.9 out of 5 stars 140 customer reviews

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Length: 246 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews


It Rains In February is a touchingly written memoir in the form of a posthumous letter to Ms. Summers deceased husband. The prose is stunning and lush, rich with detail. As a reader, I could smell the flowers, the coffee, the cigarettes, the sea, and the death. The characters are richly drawn and undeniably real. I consider myself a fan of the memoir, and every word of this one rings true on the deepest emotional level. It is a work of unquestionable courage and vulnerability. One cannot help but be moved by the immense sacrifice this woman is willing to make for this man, her family, and the meaning of life, death and love. Ms. Summers also shows a biting grasp of the language. E-mails passed between the characters provide the reader with a wildly intimate look at a couple struggling with every duality imaginable: love and loss, joy and madness, friendship and intimacy and, ultimately, life and death. It will leave you questioning the meaning we attach to all of it. It Rains In February reads as a wrenching yet uplifting, brutal and gentle, hopeless and life-affirming story. If youre like me, you ll want to start it again as soon as you finish the first read. --John Duffy, Psy.D., clinical psychologist and author

Leila Summers has written a memoir that takes you completely into her world. Saved emails and intimately personal diaries cried out to be crafted into a book, and Summers has not let them down. Her vivid images draw the reader into the room with the abandon of a movie-goer watching a fine film. She portrays her husbands agony and behavior with the clarity of an observer yet the compassion of a loving wife. Summer's indomitable spirit provides testament to the power of the heart to rise above tragedy and embrace hope. --Dr Deborah Barry, The Happiness Coach. Therapist and author

About the Author

Leila Summers is an author, coach and entrepreneur with a love for all things creative and human. She lives in South Africa with her two daughters and animal friends. As a book publishing and promotion coach, her forte is advising, inspiring, and assisting fellow writers and creatives to realize their full potential and authentically spread the word about their wonderful talents. Leila is also a licensed Heal your Life® practitioner who assists others in their personal growth and in learning to love themselves and live their best life. She has always had a passion for storytelling. It Rains In February: A Wife's Memoir of Love and Loss is her first book. She is busy writing her second memoir.

Product Details

  • File Size: 528 KB
  • Print Length: 246 pages
  • Publisher: Leila Summers; 1 edition (November 1, 2011)
  • Publication Date: November 1, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0062EIRAI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #578,815 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Dana on February 12, 2012
Format: Paperback
Memoirs are not my favourite books to read. Very often, when I get review requests for them, I find a kind way to turn them down. When Leila Summers approached me asking if I would review her memoir, It Rains in February: A Wife's Memoir of Love and Loss I must have been having a particularly off day because I said yes. Thank goodness for that particularly off day.

It Rains in February is written from the point of view of the author in the form of a sort of letter to her late husband outlining the fear, pain, love and agony she experience as he was sucked into a vortex of mental illness that eventually resulted in his suicide.

What surprised me the most about this epistle is the gentle and honest tone of the writing. Leila Summers (aka Robin) bares her soul in her writing and allows the reader into, what must be, the most painful and personal moments in her life. She doesn't try to excuse her decisions or behaviour or the behaviour of Stuart, her husband. She doesn't place blame for his illness or his actions on anyone. She simply (I can't believe I just used that word - I'm sure none of this was simple at all) opens her heart and lets it bleed over the pages. The result is a powerful, honest, loving remembrance.

For anyone wanting to understand mental illness from the point of view of those who love the sufferers, this book should fall into the category of required reading. For anyone who has ever said 'I don't understand how someone could kill themselves.' It Rains in February should be required reading. For those suffering from a mental illness wanting to understand how anyone could love them ... you get the idea.

Kudos to Ms Summers for having written about a devastating, life-altering experience without succumbing to sappy, overly sentimental drivel.
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Format: Paperback
This book captured my heart from the beginning. It is so completely and intimately written that I felt immersed in this family's true life experience.
The Author, Leila (aka Robyn), through her depth of sincerity in this book has helped me to more fully understand what it really means to love and accept someone you truly care about.
My hope is that other people will read this book because it is one of the best I've come across. I cried, I laughed and it has most definitely impacted how I now view my family and friends that have shown signs of emotional suffering. Ann Carlson.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
From the moment I began reading, it was hard to put this book down. I can honestly see this story as a movie on the big screen one day.

Through out this book, I laughed and cried and in-between, I felt all sorts of emotions. The gifts I received from reading this book are many and the impact it has had on me is powerful. Robyn is one of those rare souls that come into this life and shows us what it really is to love deeply, honestly, unconditionally, without judgment and wholeheartedly. There is no weakness in this.... for I believe it takes great strength and courage to see, feel, experience and listen with heart first. While this book gave me great insight into the tortured heart and soul of one who is mentally unwell, it also felt like a spiritual journey of sorts. Through Robyn/Leila's writing, I got to experience the power and beauty of her forgiving heart . Being witness to this was healing for me in my own life in so many ways. Leila's ability to be honest and yet tender with her children through out such a horrific time is deeply inspiring and moving. Truly, I am in awe of the woman and mother she was through such a horrific experience.

How many people in this life can look beyond the hurt and pain someone has caused them in their own life, to get to the depths of that persons tortured heart, and walk with them through it all, to be understanding and feel that pain and hurt for them, even while you are in so much pain?

This story is a powerful one... I think it will cause you to ask yourself many questions about who you are as a person. It will trigger all sorts of emotions, perhaps, anger... deep sadness, fear, and pain but I think it will also ignite emotions that are deeper than all of them, the most powerful of all, that being love.
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By JenB on August 13, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is riveting and powerfully written!

The fact that her husband was so verbose in his pain gives the reader a valuable insight into what might be going through the head of someone who is ill enough to take their own life.

Others may criticize the author for enabling or standing by allowing herself or her children to be a victim of this man's illness but it is only because they have not lived with someone in the depths of depression.

You believe the person you once knew still lies within them and can be reached. You protect your children by letting them see the good in their other parent and shielding them from the dark the best you can.

After reading this book I challenge anyone to tell what they would have done differently that would have changed the fateful outcome of the story.
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Format: Paperback
I was asked to review this book, and while I enjoyed it, it's difficult to separate the written word from the heavy emotional content of the story itself. I can say without hesitation that this book is ingeniously crafted and well written.

The reader understands from the beginning that this husband and father is doomed to suicide. The story is the cracking of the family relationships, the love and the agony, the controlling and the letting go. I say that it is about his two wives because when his wife Robyn gave up on saving her husband's life, she invented an email friend, Leila Summers, who could perhaps lure him back to an appreciation of life that he had lost.

More than anything else, I saw this story as the love of parents for their children. Stuart's parents loved him so much that they were blind to his real discussions of suicide. Stuart loves his children so much that he put off his suicide for as long as he could hold out. His mistress loved her children enough to stay with her own husband and patch up their marriage. And above all, there is the author, Stuart's wife, whose pain is a perfect trifecta of love for her husband, his undying and agonizing love for another woman, and the author's love for their children. She keeps these three prongs of her life separated to the very end, unselfishly spreading herself far too thin.

It is too easy to see the story in hindsight and offer free advice along the way, wishing Robyn would let go of Stuart, wishing Stuart would let go of either his madness or his life and end everyone's suffering. But ultimately, the story is what it is, and I found a great deal to identify with along the way.

My final wish is that the children of Robyn and Stuart will know that they were greatly loved and that they can refuse to let the past define them. But the book leaves me hopeful for eveyone's future.

-- Java Davis (Kindle Book Review)
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