Sunday 13 May 2018

If You Knew Her

Finished May 5
If You Knew Her by Emily Elgar

This suspense novel follows three characters. The first one we see is Cassie Jensen, as she is out late in the evening on a road near her home. She sees headlights coming towards her, and recognizes them. She tries to move quickly to a wider spot in the road, but can't before the car is upon her. As the book continues, we move into the past with Cassie and see what led to this moment.
The second character we see is Alice, a nurse in a special intensive care unit at a hospital. Alice has been at the hospital a few years, and really enjoys her job. She feels close to those in her care, working to understand them, so she can give them her best. Alice is married, and although she and her husband have tried to have children, they have been disappointed. Alice is trying to come to terms with this and go along with the plan to adopt.
The third character we see is Frank. Frank is one of Alice's patients, and he has been on her ward for a few weeks. Frank is a man who has struggled with addiction, who has let his life pull him down, and who was looking to a difficult future when he suffered a major stroke. The doctor on the ward believes that Frank is in a Permanent Vegatative State, and should soon be moved on to long term care home. Alice disagrees. She thinks she has seen something in Frank's eyes, despite his lack of response to anything. Alice, and the other nurses, talk to Frank as if he is aware, telling him about their world, and sometimes about their secrets.
Frank has also found that he can hear remarkably well, tuning into other conversations that take place on the ward. When Cassie is admitted to the ward, he takes an interest as she is right across from him. As Frank observes who is visiting Cassie and how they behave, Alice is also noticing some things. But, unfortunately, Frank cannot communicate his worries, and Alice is distracted by her own issues.
This is a story of people who aren't what they seem to be on the surface, people who have inner lives with hidden worries, and hidden agendas. A fantastic read.

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