Thursday, January 17, 2013

Review: Ten Days by Janet Gilsdorf

Title: Ten Days
Author: Janet Gilsdorf
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Kensington
Publish Date: October 2012
Source: I received a copy from the PR; however, this did not affect my review.

Why You're Reading This Book:

  • You're a fiction fan
  • You don't mind tough subjects
What's the Story?:

From "In a riveting debut novel infused with uncommon insight, Janet Gilsdorf draws readers into an unforgettable story of love, heartache, family, and renewal.

After six years of marriage, Anna and Jake Campbell have settled into a routine of daily responsibility and familiar comforts. The demands of raising two small children—three-year-old Chris and baby Eddie—take a toll, especially combined with Jake’s schedule as an orthopedic surgeon. But together, cautious Anna and calm, optimistic Jake negotiate, sometimes gracefully, sometimes not so much, every obstacle that comes their way. Until the night Eddie gets sick.

When Anna phones Jake at work to seek advice, he reassures her that Eddie has just caught her cold. But with the morning light comes the terrible realization that her baby is seriously ill. Guilt-ridden, deeply angry, and shell-shocked, Anna spends bottomless hours alone in the ICU where Eddie teeters on between life and death. In the days that follow Eddie’s diagnosis, grief gives way to recrimination and accusations. Anna, focused only on her younger son, ignores Chris’s need for attention, while Jake is drawn to an old temptation. And the six steady years Anna and Jake have spent together—years of give and take, hope and hardship, inside jokes and shared memories—seem suddenly fragile and fleeting.

Ten Days is a beautifully written and compelling story of the simple, momentary choices that come to shape our lives, of love tested to the limit, and of the myriad small triumphs that can become our greatest joys."

My Two Cents: 

"Ten Days" is the story of every parent's worst nightmare (or not being a parent myself, what I would imagine every parent's worst nightmare is at least). Your kid is sick with some sort of unknown illness and you have no idea what to do for them. This is exactly what happens to Anna and Jake. To make matters worse, both of them seem to almost be at wit's end of their marriage and relationship with each other. It's really sad. One would think that a child's illness would bring them together but both of them seem to be so bent out of shape with each other that things only seem to get worse.

I understand that good marriages don't last forever all the time but I could not really understand why there seemed to be so much dislike and coldness between them. They alternately blame each other in passive aggressive ways during their child's illness. Is it because of something that happened in the past that we the readers aren't aware of? Did it just sort of happen without a reason? There is a litany things that it could be but we are not privy to what that something is. It definitely took away from the book a little bit for me. I think I would of connected with the characters better if I could understand what happened to their marriage.

I also really did not get the story line with the daycare provider. She has all of these health inspectors scrutinizing her because two kids at her daycare get meningitis yet they don't comment on the fact that she doesn't have hot running water or some of the other things that are going on in her house. It was just interesting.

The baby in the book is suffering from meningitis, a very scary disease. As this book was written by a pediatrician, there is a lot of good detail in the book about the disease and its origin and possible treatments.

Bottom line: An ok read about real-life medical issues.



  1. The marriage must have been very fragile to begin with...I agree with you, this event should have united them. Now if a child dies or is abducted..even the best marriages suffer. The medical deets sound interesting. Awesome review.

  2. This one sounds good, but also like a tough read. I would really need to be in the mood for this one. Sick child, and marriage struggles seem heart wrenching.


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