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Number of Pages: 320
Vendor: WestBow Press
Publication Date: 2006
Dimensions: 8.37 X 5.43 (inches)
Availability: In Stock
Series: Women of Faith Fiction
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Natalie Moore is about to lose what little cleavage she had.
Shell shave her head, leave her church, fall for a man in scrubs, learn to tap, and flash a roomful of women.
Natalie needs to know with or without her breasts she is more than the sum of her parts.
Laura Jensen Walker, a breast cancer survivor herself, takes readers through Natalies daily battle emotionally, physically, and spiritually against this life-altering disease in Reconstructing Natalie. Told from Natalies perspective, the reader gains a sense of what its really like living with breast cancer. Walker portrays Natalie in a way that readers can sympathize with her, feeling her pain, frustration, joy, and sorrow throughout her cancer journey.
In order to prevent the cancer from spreading, Natalie decides to have a bilateral mastectomy followed by reconstructive surgery and chemotherapy. For a currently-single woman already sensitive about her breasts, Natalie wonders if shell ever have a love life again once she becomes breast-less and bald. With the constant love and support of those around her, especially her childhood friend Andy, Natalie learns that her worth does not depend on her breasts or any of her physical attributes.
Natalie is a strong character with multiple dimensions and a sense of humor. As the narrator, she is honest and genuine about her emotions in every situation. Some Christians might be slightly offended when, after her diagnosis, Natalie decides against telling a girl at her office that shes showing too much cleavage by wearing low-neck shirt. Natalie thought, She might as well enjoy her boobs while she can. This kind of reaction from a woman who once scolded this same office assistant for dressing immodestly reveals the candid and real thoughts of a woman just diagnosed with breast cancer. Even a Christian woman is still a woman who is influenced by societys standards of beauty. Shes not immune to having these kinds of thoughts. Natalies not perfect by any means, which humanizes her and makes her someone all women can relate to.
Jensens descriptions and characterization of minor characters such as Jillian, Merritt, Andy, and Josh are detailed and consistent. The reader feels as though she really knows these characters and their personalities. At times, it seems as though Jensen gives excessive detail to character development. In one scene, she is showing the obsession Natalie, Jillian, and Merritt have with the TV show Friends. She has the three women arguing over what happened in an episode for quite some time, giving details specific to the show that arent necessary for the novel or for character development. Jensen also devotes a portion of the book solely to Natalies cancer journal entries. While its beneficial to read some of Natalies entries, the same thing happens in every entry, which makes that section less interesting to read. The romantic connection between Andy and Natalie unfolds gradually, but becomes slightly unrealistic when they confess their love to one another and the next minute Andys asking for Natalies hand in marriage. This could seem possible considering their lifelong friendship, but as a reader, I didnt expect the engagement to come so soon. There arent any scenes of Natalie and Andys wedding either, so thats slightly disappointing for those hopeless romantics out there.
This novel is a captivating page-turner, bringing you into the life and reality of a breast cancer survivor. The emotions and thoughts of the narrator are real, making it so you cant help but root for Natalie as she battles the disease. If you are a woman looking to relate to a genuine female character in a novel that touches all emotions, culminating into a story of hope, then this novel is for you. Christy Wong, Christian Book Previews.com
BoobooBaton Rouge, LAAge: 55-65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Great book!July 19, 2011BoobooBaton Rouge, LAAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I took this book with me to chemotherapy for breast cancer. I enjoyed reading every word of it. I gave one to another lady who was there for the same thing. I also gave one to my sister who is a breast cancer survivor for 8 years. We decided that after we finish reading the book we will pass it on to others like us.
Shirley Peaseupstate New YorkAge: 45-54Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Terrific book!March 30, 2011Shirley Peaseupstate New YorkAge: 45-54Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 4Meets Expectations: 5This book shows the full range of emotions surrounding a diagnosis of breast cancer--sadness, humor, perseverance, etc. I thought it was fantastic.
Leslie4 Stars Out Of 5May 27, 2009LeslieAs a woman in ladies ministry, this book takes you into the world of a woman battling a serious and scary illness. I think it would be helpful to you if you know someone with cancer. Many times people don't know how to react to someone's diagnosis. They don't know how to help in the right way. Often the wrong thing is said to the sufferer, or her privacy is severely violated making her uncomfortable and unable to be herself. I thought these issues were explained in a very helpful way. If you can learn from this fictionization of a real woman's struggle, you could be a real blessing during some woman's life. Remember she is not "her disease". She's the same person who you have known and loved throughout the years. Be involved in her life if she will accept your friendship and encouragement, and let her set the boundaries so she is comfortable with her life and relationships. Most of all don't disappear when she needs you. God bless you, and may God continue to give us miracles of healing.
Shelly5 Stars Out Of 5February 13, 2009ShellyThis is a wonderful and inspiring book by Laura Jensen Walker. It details the struggle that Natalie goes through when she is diagnosed with breast cancer and is faced with the choice of whether or not to keep her breasts. Laura Jensen Walker deals with this subject with humor and sensitivity. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has faced breast cancer or knows a friend or loved one who has.
Lisa5 Stars Out Of 5October 19, 2008LisaWhat a great book! If there can be a humorous writing regarding the serious topic of breast cancer, this is the book. Natalie was so brave...yet not beyond recognizing or going through the fears of the unknown after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Her family and great friends that lend support to her is admirable...as well as the new friends that she meets in her support group. I haven't known anyone personally that has gone through breast cancer...but this book has given me a little insight of what one does go through. How thankful we need to be need to be for our health...and the great compassion, love and tenderness we need to show those that are going through that kind of ordeal. Thank you Laura Jensen Walker for creating a story with real life issues and adding in alot of humor to make it more bearable. Great job!