Monday, October 10, 2011

Proof of Heaven

Title:  Proof of Heaven
Author:  Mary Curran Hackett 
Publishing Information:  William Morrow Paperbacks. 2011. 336 pages.

Book Source:  I received this book through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program free of cost in exchange for an honest review.

Favorite Quote: "The only constant in Cathleen's life was her ability to love...Her love was so different for each person, but miraculously her heart had room enough for all of them. Even when her faith and reason failed her, love did not."

Proof of Heaven is a book about a mother and a child and the lengths any parent would go to save a sick child. It is also a book about beliefs - as the title suggests - about god and what happens after death. Cathleen is a young single mother trying to care for Colm, her very young but very sick child. Due to his illness, Colm has "died" many times in his life and then returned.

The book touches on different points of view on heaven and what happens after death - the absolute believer in heaven, the nonbeliever, the one torn between belief and nonbelief, and the believer who no longer believes. Ultimately, the book is about a mother's love and her desire to take any path that will mean a cure for her son.

The topic of the book is an interesting one that has been discussed in so many contexts. The first half of the book develops the different points of view and depicts them through individual characters in the book. The characters are at some points likable and at some points really not. The story is well told at this point and interesting to read.

The latter half of the book unfortunately goes beyond that. To me, it becomes melodramatic. Colm is age seven towards the end of the book. The statements attributed to him come across as much older sounding. Perhaps, that is maturity attained through living with illness, but it does not always ring true. It seems to be there to make the point of the book.

Whether or not the book gives proof of heaven, I leave you to discover.

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