Life on the Refrigerator Door: Notes Between a Mother and Daughter, a novel
HarperCollins, 2007 (2007)
Hardcover, Audio, e-Book
Reviewed by Lori Waddington
ifteen-year-old Claire and her mother have a typical relationship; Claire's mother works full-time, and when she is home, Claire is at a friend's house or out with her boyfriend. As a result, mother and daughter communicate by leaving each other notes
on the refrigerator door
. The notes range from the mundane '
I made spaghetti bolognaise for us
' to the more important '
Don't worry, I have my key.
hen Claire's mother discovers a lump in her breast, the notes take on a different tone. When her mother writes the note, '
Claire ... I have breast cancer
', Claire tries to stay positive, telling her '
We can't give up hope, Mom. Lots of people recover from this
', while still dealing with her own teenage issues - '
Mom, Michael said he didn't want to hang out so much
', and '
I can't believe you turned my shirt PINK! I CAN'T WEAR IT NOW.
' However, both mother and daughter must eventually face the fact that the cancer is '
not getting any better,
' and learn to cherish the time they have left.
ife On The Refrigerator Door
is not your typical novel. First-time author Alice Kuipers has basically put together a book of notes, ranging from sentences to several paragraphs, and it works like a charm. She does a very nice job of conveying the relationship between Claire and her mother, as they deal with issues ranging from teenage angst to life and death.
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