Monday, August 5, 2013

Book Review: The Promise of Stardust

"The Promise of Stardust," written by Priscille Sibley, is a poignant debut novel about the tough choices a husband must make for his family. The novel begins with Matt losing his wife, Elle. Except she's not entirely gone; her fall from a ladder caused severe brain damage, but it didn't harm the baby inside her. After watching her mother subsist in a coma for a prolonged period while Elle was a teenager, she became vehemently opposed to being kept on life support if the circumstances ever required it for her. However, she'd never contemplated that the issue might arise while she was pregnant with the baby that she and Matt had been desperately wanting. Matt wishes to keep her on life support to give the baby a chance, but he's opposed by those family members who have a different opinion about what Elle would want done.

Sibley has crafted a suspenseful, emotion-laden, thought-provoking story of a couple in love, and their shared dreams. She addresses the issue of infertility with compassion and the topic of abortion with respect for opposing viewpoints. Her restraint in keeping her personal views on abortion out of the narrative, allowing the reader an opportunity to examine her own beliefs, is commendable. 

A neonatal intensive care nurse, Sibley's experience and knowledge of the subject matter enriches the narrative. Told from Matt's point of view, Sibley has created a compelling, believable male narrator. This story is a great pick for anyone who likes reading about more complex topics that involve issues of morality. I also recommend it for any woman who's had a miscarriage/stillborn or infertility issues.

In summary, this is a beautiful debut novel that will remain in your thoughts long after your read the final page.