Home > Adult Reading Level, Fiction, Health, Ridiculous > Narrow Interest of the Week Award

Narrow Interest of the Week Award

Today folks, allow me to present the  Narrow Interest of the Week Award.  And the winner is…Left Neglected by Lisa Genova(Ph.D.)!  Oh brother, when the cover of the trade paperback edition includes an endorsement by Jodi Picoult you know you’re in for a bummer.  From the NLS annotation:

Narrow Interest of the Week!

High-powered executive and working mom Sarah Nickerson survives a car wreck with a condition called “left neglect.”  No longer aware of the left side of her body and unable to see anything on her left, she ponders an uncertain future.  Some strong language and some descriptions of sex.

Okay, I looked it up, and this book has 336 pages in the print version.  So, I’m going to assume that the accident probably takes place in the first 50 pages (at most, right?) and that for another 280 this dummy is “ponder[ing] an uncertain future.”

BOR-ING.  Why why why?  Why does a book exist called Left Neglected that only deals with this medical phenomenon of left neglect?  And that is why, in case you hadn’t figured it out by now, I award Lisa Genova the Narrow Interest of the Week Award.  At the very least Sarah Nickerson should look into getting a left side transplant with the left side of a cadaver, right?  Let’s mix it up a bit, people!

Now, I want to address the “strong language…some descriptions of sex” part of the annotation.  I can be honest with you, Gentle Reader, I have no intention of reading this book.  But I have every intention of commenting on what I think the content of this book might be.  First; strong language.  I think the strong language in the book will be situations where Sarah Nickerson curses her invisible left side loudly.  As in, “damn you you useless piece of shit, I never favored you anyway,” or, “you good-for-nothing son-of-a-bitching left-side, go f*ck yourself!”

Which brings me to part two of the content disclaimer: some descriptions of sex.  Really?  If this book describes, in any detail, a sexual encounter in which her neglected left side leads to some wacky sex-hijinks, I must object.  As in,

  • Me: Objection, Your Honor.
  • Judge: On what grounds?
  • Me: On the grounds that this is stupid.
  • Judge: Sustained.

See?  Even the legal system agrees with me–this book is most likely stupid, and at the very least, lame. But, if you’ve read this post and for some crazy reason you still think you should read this book, here is a handy link to purchase it privately.  I wouldn’t risk checking this doo-doo-pie out at your library, if I were you–somebody might see you.  At least Amazon will ship it in a plain brown corrugated wrapper.

*my own disclaimer: if this book had been about somebody losing feeling of their left side due to a stroke, I wouldn’t have made fun.  I’m sorry if you, or someone you love, has experienced “left neglect,” but that doesn’t negate the fact that this book sounds stupid to me, and, as a matter of course, must be ridiculed.

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  1. Meredith
    August 23, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Here’s a funny thing – I just finished reading this!!! It was pretty good. I don’t remember any sex or swearing and the accident does not happen in the first 50 pages – it takes a long time to get to it. At one point I even stopped and verified in the annotation that there was an accident… If you want me to say more, I can, but otherwise I give it 3 out of 5 stars.

  2. EHB
    August 23, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    Well see, that is good to know. The annotation is far too vague. I had kind of assumed that because of the whole “narrow interest” issue. Say more though. I want to know what this book is “really” about.

  3. Meredith
    August 23, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    It’s about some lady who you cannot stand or relate to who has three kids and works 80+ hours a week and is a total Type A workaholic. She makes a gazillion dollars and they all live in a fancy suburb of Boston. Her husband works but he does not make as much and his job is on the line with the economy. She has this accident and the rest of the book is her wanting to go back to work, but not being able to. There is also this plot with her Mother who comes to help after the accident but was emotionally distant in her childhood. It had a “happy” ending, but not the happiest or most positive that it could be (spoiler, she is still partially paralyzed). Overall I liked that she wasn’t magically cured at the end, but after going on and on about the economy and how bad it is it was kind of fairy tale-ish. She also moves to Vermont, which just helps solidify that only slow people live there. It was on the advanced reader table so I took it (and brought it back). I had a really hard time with the character, but I am also the kind of person who does not understand people who do not take all of their vacation each year… Like I said not bad, I finished it quickly but I probably would not recommend it.

  4. EHB
    August 23, 2011 at 4:55 pm

    Hilarious! Vermont. Right now I’m listening to the Tale of Halcyon Crane. Its about ghosts and stuff which is cool, but the main character is also freaking slow. I’m probably going to blog it here as soon as I’m done.

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