When Isabel Allende’s daughter Paula passed away, her entire life and family structure changed out of necessity. This book, written to Paula, is mainly about that family, changing and growing and loving, interspersed with her own feelings and successes. We get an inside look at her writing, her beliefs, and how she does it all. This book truly sums up the days of her family.
I found this book extremely compelling. I’ve read and loved several of Allende’s books and having an insight into her life was amazing for me. I knew so very little about her. I also found it relevant to my own life because I’ve watched my mother deal with her grief over losing my brother and so I felt deeply for Isabel as well. It’s impossibly hard. I’ve actually recommended that my mom read this book because I found it heartening; Isabel finds meaning in her life even though the hole is always there.
Isabel paints the characters of her family in a way that makes us feel like we know them, that we could bump into them on the street. I was amazed at some of the intimate details she revealed and am not sure I could deal with the world knowing such things about me, but by the end of the memoir, they are our friends too, and we want them to get through their own individual struggles and hardships.
I’d very much recommend this memoir. Not only is it an insight into Isabel’s life, but she highlights many issues that she and her family members struggle with. I think many people would not only enjoy this work but benefit from thinking about what she has to say.
Buy The Sum of Our Days on Amazon.