My Review:Lucas and Katya were boarding school seniors when, blindingly in love, they decided to have a baby. Seventeen years later, after years of absence, Lucas is a weekend dad, newly involved in his daughter Vera's life. But after Vera suffers a terrifying psychotic break at a high school party, Lucas takes her to Lithuania, his grandmother's homeland, for the summer. Here, in the city of Vilnius, Lucas hopes to save Vera from the sorrow of her diagnosis. As he uncovers a secret about his grandmother, a Home Army rebel who escaped Stutthof, Vera searches for answers of her own. Why did Lucas abandon her as a baby? What really happened the night of her breakdown? And who can she trust with the truth?
Skillfully weaving family mythology and Lithuanian history with a story of mental illness, inheritance, young love, and adventure, Rufi Thorpe has written a wildly accomplished, stunningly emotional book.
I highly recommend this to fans of literary fiction; this is a brilliant story and a stunning portrayal of a different side of bi-polarism -- being a semi-absent parent to a bi-polar teenager. And yet, it is so much more -- it is about our history, our genealogy, our second chances and, yes, a parent's love. I was reminded of some my other all-time favorites when I finished this one -- not necessarily because of the similarity in the plots, although you can find similar threads in all of these, but because I was just so blown away with awe and beauty -- Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pessl, The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt and Last Night in Montreal by Emily St. John Mandel. Dear Fang, With Love comes out today, May 24, 2016, you can purchase HERE, and I hope you consider reading this one!
Yet who was anyone to police someone else's thoughts and decide which were sane and which insane? Who were doctors to inspect my daughter's brain, determine that her ideas were delusions, her mind unfit? That was the thing about bipolar--there was no blood test, no brain scan, nothing that went into the diagnosis except one person deciding another person was insane.