Monday, May 30, 2011

"In the Mirror" by Ann Carbine Best

It's not very often a memoir is written that compares favorably to two of the best memoirs I've ever read: Lost In America by Sherwin Nuland and Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt. Ann Carbine Best's In the Mirror shares the best qualities of each: honesty, candor, superior writing, shocking truths, and emotional depth that won't allow you to stop reading.

Best's prose reflects the shocks life continually deals her, shocks that would numb any person to her own feelings. Not one, not two, but three battles she has to fight, any one of which could defeat her. But her bravery, her Mormon faith, her willingess to love even those who seemingly do not love her, carries her to victory. Her stoicism in the face of adversity, her turbulent emotions held in check, permeate every sentence.

"I got home from work and found Larry talking on the phone. He looked startled when he saw me." So begins the bizarre saga of her marriage. The candor of her emotions is heartbreaking. The coldness of some of those she loves filters subtly through the narrative. Despite the odds against her, she never gives up. "I think I'm getting used to saying goodbye to people I love." Ann's life is one of constant deception, but she handles it with charity and forgiveness, and in the end she can say, "It was a beautiful day, the sky almost cloudless and so blue that I thought if I looked hard enough I might see my face reflected in it."

In the Mirror reflects Ann Best's life clearly--a bittersweet life you'll never forget.

In the Mirror is published by WiDo Publishers and is available on


Ann Best said...

Richard, this is a wonderful review. Thank you SO much!

Would you be willing to put it up on Amazon for me--if you haven't already? I did this, finally, for some of my followers' books, and it was easy to do. People don't usually buy a book until there are some good reviews posted.

I'm going to tell my readers you've posted this. I won't quote it because I want to drive them to your blog so you can get some more followers for your excellent posts!
Ann Best, Memoir Author

Tanya Reimer said...

Wow! Sounds great! Another one to check out. Thanks Richard.

Elizabeth Varadan aka Mrs. Seraphina said...

What a lovely review. I definitely want to read that book now, and I am not one who reads a lot of memoir (although I did read and love Angela's Ashes.) Kudos to Ann for such an accomplishment.

Meanwhile, today I posted some travel contests that I think you should consider, Richard. Your Paris blogs had me ready to hop on the plane again!

Clarissa Draper said...

I just finished it last night and I agree with you completely. I loved it!

Andy said...

Hello Richard. I'm coming to you from Ann Best's blog.

I've only just become familiar with Ann through Romantic Friday Writers.

I'm not much of a book reader, but I've been so impressed with what's been written up about her memoir that I think I will purchase it in the future.

Thank you for posting such a lovely review. You've done Ann proud!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

You've written a terrific review for what sounds like a terrific book. I'm so happy for Ann. Getting good reviews from both men and women isn't an easy task, and the fact that she is says a lot about her writing.

Deb Shucka said...

Hi Richard,

I'm here from Ann's blog, and so glad to find you. I'm eager to read her book, and even more so now after reading your wonderful review.