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The History of My Body    by Sharon Heath order for
History of My Body
by Sharon Heath
Order:  USA  Can
Genoa, 2011 (2011)
Softcover, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

The History of My Body by Sharon Heath is another coming-of-age story generally ho hum, but with a twist that will keep the reader glued to the pages of this very unusual tale.

Fleur Robins is upset over her grandfather's death and has devised a way she believes will return him to life. For a little girl, she has a very curious mind and makes her own rules for her life. Needless to say, her plan does not revive the grandfather who loved her without reservation. When he was no longer able to speak, they carried on conversations in her head, which satisfied her perceived love for him and his for her.

As she grew to a twelve year-old, Fleur's intelligence led her to live with a couple who wanted to expand her mind and then use it for the good of humanity. This is where the plot lost me. The quantum of whatever was too much for me to understand, but as the story still revolved around Fleur, I kept my interest.

Fleur obviously had problems from birth. She was into pinching herself hard whenever she felt she needed punishment. She grew up with a pro-life father, an alcoholic mother, a middle-aged nanny with the finesse of a Mack truck, a flatulent ex-nun, and numberless babies saved from the 'devil abortionists'. No wonder she turned out just a little the other side of the norm.

No matter what caused her extreme intelligence that led her to attend college at sixteen, she was hands and fists smarter than the researchers, who relied on her input into their various fields.

This beguiling story, with (for me) a totally baffling science segment, was well worth a read. While my son's IQ was in the normal range, he exhibited some of the mannerisms Fleur did. He was diagnosed after his death as having Asberger's. I suspect Fleur did also. The History of My Body offers a look into the mind of someone who is not like you or I and has to work to fit into society.

The author is a Jungian analyst in private practice and faulty member of the C.G. Jung institute of Los Angeles. This is her first novel.

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