A book Alix Garin
Watching a family member grow older and start to lose themselves is one of the saddest parts of life. I went through this with my grandmother, and it was heartbreaking when she eventually forgot who I was. For a while, my mother was a single mom, and my grandmother basically helped raise me while she was at work – because of that, I was hit pretty hard. Forget Me Not by Alix Garin is a remarkable book, in that it takes that very issue and constructs a beautiful story around it about coming to terms with one’s life, letting go of the past, and trying to mend bridges that may have started to fall apart. The main character, Clémence, is at odds with her mother due to the treatment of her Grandmother in her ailing health. “Grammy” is in a nursing home, destined to never again be by herself at her own house due to her dementia-addled mind. She goes through delusions of her youth, frantically trying to “go home to Ma and Pa”, something that the staff of the home are not thrilled about. Clémence’s mother makes the hard choice to keep Grammy on sedatives, something that pushes Clémence to make a rash, and likely dumb, decision to take her Grandmother “home.”
“When Clémence, a student and actress struggling with personal issues, sees how miserable her grandmother is in her nursing home, she decides to break her out and take her on a road trip to the coast so she can see her childhood home one last time. But traveling with a senior with Alzheimer’s Disease comes with a fair amount of challenges, and the journey is fraught with highs, lows, and near misses. Still, it’s a chance for the two women to reconnect, with each other and with themselves, and it’s a chance for Clémence to give Grammy the gift of one last thrilling and joyful experience.”
I don’t want to spoil much, but what follows helps Clémence come to terms with her own past, rebuild her relationship with her mother, and even let Grammy have one last bit of happiness before the final curtain. This was a very emotional book, and the writing is a masterclass of what a graphic novel can be. The art style, while simplistic, fits the light nature of the story very well. I was skeptical something bordering on the monochrome would be so emotive until I kept reading this. I recommend this book a LOT to anyone dealing with a similar situation to this or has in the past. It may make you shed some tears, but in the end it will be worth it.
If you would like a copy of this book for yourself, click HERE
NOTE: I received a free preliminary, and likely unedited copy of this book from Netgalley for the purposes of providing an honest, unbiased review of the material. Thank you to all involved.