Young widow Kate Davis can't move on---because her husband, Kevin, keeps talking to her! Group therapy is her last attempt to find sanity, and there she meets Pastor Jack---who quiets her mind. But when she stumbles upon a secret Kevin was hiding, he begins to shout at her. Will his voice ever stop? 320 pages, softcover from Cook.
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On the day after Kevin's funeral he begins talking to his widow, Kate. There seem to be huge gaps in Kate's memories of Kevin, but he isn't explaining himself. At first his comments are loving, but as time goes by, something seems off. With an already low grip on sanity, Kate camps out on her living room floor, rarely venturing upstairs, even to shower. Visits from her mother, a recent widow herself, and her sister raise more questions than they answer.
As Kevin becomes more persistent, Kate lashes out at those around her. There's no one she can trust, no one who can get behind the barriers she's erecting faster than she can blink, until she finds herself in a basketball game at a center for underprivileged youth, where a simple kid named Big Tim gets under her skin for the first time in forever.
Talking to the Dead is Bonnie Grove's debut novel. While it is about lies and secrets faced in a spiral of grief, it isn't ultimately a depressing book. Grove infuses the tale with compassion, humor, and hope. This is a book that will grab your heartstrings and not let go.
what a delightful surprise!!! I could not put this book down till I finished it!!! The story and it's characters quickly draws you in and you find you don't want to leave until you have seen them through to the end. It is very well written , very readable and very believable!!! A book to be recommended and reread!!
Kate Davis has a bit of a problem. She’s lost her husband, lost her short-term memory, and is hearing the voice of her dead beloved speaking to her. Before I go further I should clarify that Talking to the Dead isn’t a supernatural-suspense storyline despite the fact that Kate is hearing from the dead, instead it falls into the contemporary women’s fiction genre, with the story leaning towards psychological and emotional healing than it does any encounters with the spiritual world (apart from God of course.)
Mired in grief, Kate finds herself camped out on her living room floor, rarely eating, and even more rarely bathing. Supported by friends, family, and eventually group therapy and a psychiatrist, Kate slowly begins to recover her memories and in the process realizes that the man she has been so longing for was…well….a jerk.
It was a pleasure to read Bonnie Grove’s work. In a story that could easily be emotionally suffocating, she manages to inject enough levity and humor (without sacrificing plausibility) to see readers through to the end. It’s also rather thrilling to find that Grove is a fellow Canadian (no wonder the references to Wee Book Inn and Pigeon Lake!)
This debut novel is pitch-perfect and authentically captures the intense attachment of marriage, the grief following loss, and the bonds of community and grace of God that help move Grove’s characters towards healing.
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Review 4 for Talking to the Dead
Date:January 5, 2010
I purchased the book because it was on a bookclub list. This turned out to be one of the best books I have recently read. The journey Kate took working through grief and betrayal captivated me from the very beginning.
This is such an interesting concept for a book. We follow a new widow as she goes on her journey of grief. Or is it grief? As Kate suffers from memory loss of what happened leading up to Kevin's sudden death she struggles to work through her grief, she starts recovering her memories. The question is, does she really want to remember? The problem is that Kevin died, but he hasn't quit talking to her. Is he a ghost, is she crazy? What is going on! This book kept me turning the pages to find out what was really happening to Kate and what happened in the year leading up to Kevin's death. I would categorize this as women's fiction with a little mystery mixed in. I enjoyed "Talking to the Dead" and look forward to more books by Bonnie.
Kate Davis is sinking! Fast! October had brought the drowning death of her father, and now Spring, has brought another tragedy. Her husband Kevin is suddenly dead. This is not how her life is supposed to be. She truly thinks she may be going crazy. Even the professionals think she is going off the deep end. She is hearing Kevin talk to her. They keep characterizing her as hearing voices, but it is just Kevin's voice. The scary thing is Kate has also lost her memory. Her journey to bring herself back to reality is a painful journey. Seeking professional help, and even Spiritual help, Kate finds that not all people serve God equally, or have a right view of God. Abused by a over zealous pastor, trying to cast out the demon within her, Kate is leery of all things connected with God.Enter Pastor Jack, a wonderful man devoted to giving to inner city kids. His time, his love and his devotion to the kids of Glen Hills Community Center. He also has a church of 'sorts' that meets each Sunday at the Center. Most importantly, he is a friend, a friend determined to help her realize that God is not like what she has been presented, and determined to help her through this difficult time in her life. Many surprises, even betrayals by family and friends along Kate's path to healing, make Bonnie Grove's novel a story that will touch your heart. When first considering this book for review, I was truly afraid it would be some sort of weird, supernatural story. You will be touched and moved by this story.Bonnie Grove's first novel, will never strike you as a first novel. The story is amazing and well written. The depth of the story is amazing to me. The book ends with a Afterword Interview with Bonnie Grove, and a list of discussion questions for a book club or group discussion. Most definitely a book to share with friends.
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Review 7 for Talking to the Dead
Date:August 8, 2009
Stunned, stunning, stuntabulous! Okay. The last was absolutely not a word, but Talking to the Dead a novel by Bonnie Grove is simply the kind of book that takes you places you never have been to before. Following Kate as she suffers the grief of her husband Kevin's death at such a young age is mesmerizing. Certainly, Kate's first response of quiet withdrawal makes perfect sense. How do you move on when the love of your life has died? But also how do you move on when there are pieces of your life that are also missing? Lastly, what do you do when you hear the voice of your dead husband clearly speaking to you?The ride is amazing. I seriously did not know what direction Kate's story was going to take. Every detail and chapter led me closer to the conclusion, but I certainly was not sure of what that conclusion was. I LOVED THAT! I cannot tell you how often I have read a book and have completely figured out the ending. This doesn't always take away from a story, but it is sure nice to really be taken along for an adventurous ride. A ride that was sad, happy, frightening, thought provoking, and fully moving.This is a book I thoroughly enjoyed with fresh characters from an author whose work I will now highly anticipate.
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Review 8 for Talking to the Dead
Date:July 15, 2009
Talking to the Dead has the perfect balance of humour, suspense and grace. Its quirky, surprising, and uplifting. With masterfully woven prose, Bonnie Grove had me cheering for Kate, laughing out loud at the exaggeration of the Reverend J. D. Slater, stomping my feet at the insensitivity of her sister Heather, and wiping tears away at the gentleness of Pastor Jack. I dont recommend starting to read this book unless youve got time to finish it in one sitting! You wont want to read it any other wayits that captivating.Count me in as the number-one-fan of Bonnie Grove. I cant wait to read the next story!
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Review 9 for Talking to the Dead
Date:June 26, 2009
Well written and fast paced. I read this in one sitting. Even though the plot of the novel covers a serious subject, there were plenty of laugh out loud moments. I would give it a five, but I was left with a couple of 'whys' that were left unanswered, such as why did Kate's father not like her husband? How could her sister so easily form a relationship with Kate's adversary? Other than that, the book was wonderful.
Not since Cry the Beloved Country have I labeled a book hauntingly beautiful, but Talking to the Dead deserves that description. Not only is the story poignant, moving, and even funny (appropriately and surprisingly so) at times, but it is exquisitely written. Bonnie Grove knows her topicand knows how to write. Im not easily impressed, but this book captivated me from the very beginning, and it did not let me down, even to the last bittersweet word. If this book doesnt become a bestseller, theres something seriously wrong with the reading public. Congratulations, Bonnie!
Talking to the Dead by Bonnie Grove is full of surprises for its readers. Kate Davis' life has shattered in the unexpected death of her husband Kevin. She can't eat or sleep or even go up the stairs to their bedroom. Her friends and family are worried about her, but they'd worry even more if they knew that Kevin was talking to Kate. She finds great comfort in the words of the man she loved with her whole being, and it seems to be helping her ability to grieve, at least at first. When I first read the description of this book, I was hooked. It sounded like a light-hearted and fun look at dealing with devastating grief. I expected a quick, fun read. Then Kevin stopped talking and started shouting, and Kate started recovering lost memories, and the book took a completely unexpected turn. Kate's quest to discover the source of his voice and then the truth behind his death lead her and the reader into dark places. The novel's sudden U-turn brings a great deal of depth and emotion to Kate and the story. I was completely blown away by Kate's journey and shocked that Grove never took the easy way out. There are no easy answers here, the bad guys don't get their just desserts, and Kate suffers unimaginably. Through it all, Grove somehow manages to keep a touch of humor so the story never gets too heavy or depressing. This is a stunning and in the end, amazingly beautiful novel of redemption and forgiveness.
Every once in a while a book grabs from the first sentence and doesn't let go until the reader turns the final page. Even then, like a magnet, the reader is drawn back to reflect. This is that book.Written in the first person narrative of Kate, and interspersed with her snippets of memories in third person narratives, this tale of a grief stricken, young woman is told. Even though the topic is glum, the story shines with brightness. This is a must-read.Interview with the author and discussion topics are included.
Bonnie Groves premiere novel, Talking to the Dead, is a beautiful book. Kate Davis is too young to be a widow. Shes too young to be losing her mind, too. But thats what she believes is happening to her because her deceased husband, Kevin, still talks to her. That makes it a bit difficult to get through the grieving process. And watching Kate go through this is difficult for her friends and loved ones especially her mother who is a recent widow, herself.Talking to the Dead delicately handles a very tough topic with grace and frankness. It opened my eyes to the grief process of the widow, which I have watched but not experienced. Bonnie Grove paints beautiful word pictures (The words I formed fell back into my throat) that really convey the feeling of the action or thought process. I am so glad I decided to preview this wonderful book!
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Review 14 for Talking to the Dead
Date:June 4, 2009
Sharon K. Souza
Kate Davis is having a really bad day. And just when she thinks it can't get any worse, her husband Kevin assures her everything is fine. The problem is, Kevin's dead. Talking to the Dead is a provocative, fast-paced, page-turning debut nobvel that will make you an instant fan of this author. It pulls you in from the first line and holds you spellbound till the final page. This is a great selection for book clubs, as there are several subjects just right for discussion.
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Review 15 for Talking to the Dead
Date:June 2, 2009
Kevin and Kate were high school sweethearts dreaming of a future together. Life was great until Kate watches their dream die unexpectedly with Kevin. Hes too young to die. Kate struggles to grasp her new reality. She is hearing Kevin talk to her. How could she move on with him so near? Why couldnt she shake this feeling? She soon realizes she needs help. Is there anyone that could really help her?I felt for Kate as she was willing to try anything to feel normal again. Part of getting her life back on track was getting her finances in order. In the process, of getting organized she uncovers something so disturbing she cant breathe. Who was this man shed been married to for five years? This couldnt be happening to her, not now.Kate reflects my heart was still a box of shattered glass. And I had serious doubts that God could put it back together. Or would care to. At least the God I saw reflected in The Reverend. His was an angry God. A black and white, right and wrong sort of GodA God whod condemned me with his high beams of holiness. Kate was struggling in every area of her life. Who could she turn to? Who could possibly understand?Talking to the Dead is not something Id normally read. The cover and the title were spooky to me, but I plunged into reading this book anyway. What a great surprise I found inside; a brilliantly refreshing story of hope, healing and second chances. The author takes you on an unexpected journey so intriguing and different you cant stop reading. Trust me you dont want to miss this adventure. After reading this youll definitely be looking forward to what Bonnie Groves writes next.www.psalm516.blogspot.com
I read this book in two sittings. It was absolutely amazing. Talking to the Dead is making my best of 2009 fiction list for sure. The writing was so well done I'd never guess it was a debut novel. I loved how the author didn't hold back on any of the issues that the character Kate was dealing with. Plus, the ending made me smile and emit a satisfied sigh. I've read some other books dealing with pain and grief and none of them come close to being as good as this one. It almost reads like a suspense in that you find out a little bit more and a little bit more as the story moves along. More than once I found myself saying, "No way!" Yet it was totally believable. The way her mind dealt with the trauma, like when she watched that short video clip over and over was SO well done. I felt like I was Kate and I hurt right along with her. At the same time I rejoiced with her when things started turning around. The dialog was also done amazing as well. The honesty of the spiritual journey and the character's inner voice was fabulously done. And for people who don't know much about mental health issues, I loved how accurate and well done the story was. Clearly the author did her research in many areas. I can't say enough great things about this debut novel. If you don't buy any other books this year, get this one!