Losing Clementine by Ashley Ream
Clementine Pritchard has it all figured out, down to the last detail. She’s over the deadening meds and the personal dramas, it’s time to depart. And that is exactly what Clementine sets out to do, choosing the means to end her life with as little mess as possible and leaving all her baggage in order. Counting down to the day when she’ll settle in for good, she starts on a 30 day journey to pick her poison, make her mark final mark on art, and resolve all the little issues left over from a childhood gone wrong.
Suicide is a delicate subject, so this review starts with a caveat–whatever your views on the matter, if you don’t want to read about suicide, don’t read this one. That said, Ream manages to take a generally morbid subject and turn it into something witty and engaging. Clementine is a great character; fully realized and colorful, she adds snark as much as poignancy to the story. This could be a very dark novel, dealing with extreme depression, abandonment, and personal fears, Clementine’s narrative has the potential to become an existentialist playground, but it just manages to steer clear of that as Clementine finds meaning in the madness.
This is an oddly entertaining novel, if you don’t mind a bit of dark humor. Clementine’s constant need to pee, her renewed sense of flavor after dumping her cocktail of antidepressants, and her unapologetic determination to do things her way, including leaving her car as the tip after a lavish last meal to ensure it does not become a loose end after her death, add a tragicomic element that make the story more than just a manic depressive’s final manifesto.
I received my copy from William Morrow.