Saturday, August 30, 2014

"Bethany's Calendar" by "Elaine Cooper"


A Story of Fear and Faith

In January of 2002, Elaine Cooper’s world turned upside down. One minute her 23-year-old daughter, Bethany, seemed fine — a happy, brilliant young woman on the verge of a new career. The next she was strapped to a gurney in the local emergency room diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor.

During the next few months, Elaine used her nursing skills to not only help Bethany battle an unseen enemy, she learned to recognize the hand of God on her daughter’s life. 

“Bethany’s Calendar” is a story of fear and faith, commitment and compassion, told with gut-wrenching honesty while sharing unwavering faith in God.

Author and Speaker, Elaine Marie Cooper, is passionate about three things: Her faith, her family, and the history of the American Revolution. 

Elaine grew up in Massachusetts where she soaked up local history much like sun seekers soak up UV rays. She could never get enough.

This interest led her to write four novels centered on the Revolutionary War: The award winning Deer Run Saga (three books) was then followed by Fields of the Fatherless. Set in 1775 in her hometown in Massachusetts, this latest release won Best Religious Fiction in the 2014 Next Generation Indie Book Awards and Best YA Fiction in the 2014 Selah Awards. 

The author has also contributed to Fighting Fear: Winning the War at Home by Edie Melson and a romance anthology entitled, I Choose You. Her work has also appeared in such periodicals as Life: Beautiful and Better Homes & Gardens. She has stories being published in the September, 2014 issues of PrayerConnect Magazine and Splickety Prime.

Elaine’s first nonfiction book entitled Bethany’s Calendar will be published in December 2014. It is a memoir of her daughter who died of a brain tumor in 2003.

She speaks before groups on a number of topics including the history of our country, growing in our walk with the Lord, and being a patient advocate. 

Elaine is married, has two grown sons, and is a GiGi to triplets. She is also a Registered Nurse. 

You can read her blog at her website: 

"Bethany's Calendar" is a five star Non-Fiction account in the life of a young lady and her family's journey with Brain Cancer. I know whatever I say about this book it will not be enough or give it justice!

When Elaine Cooper asked for reviewers to read it and write an honest review, I responded because my mother has cancer, ( lung, breast, bone and it was in her lymph nodes, though the breast cancer is in remission now). Bethany, Elaine's daughter, in her early twenties, had Brain Cancer and even through the cancers were different I felt I could learn something and maybe help her and my sisters and other family members learn to cope and understand mom and her feelings better as well as how to deal with the illness itself. I really hope others are helped by Elaine reliving her pain and sharing this book with other families struggling with this critical disease.

This book is very well written and truly a story from a mother's heart. Elaine is a nurse but this isn't written from a nurse's perception, I have read other books about people that had cancer but they were kinda of technical and "Bethany's Calendar" is not technical at all but a real story about a mother's and caregiver's struggles and heartaches dealing with cancer.

There were times I was literally crying while reading this story,such as this example from my Facebook post
 "I am setting in the dentist's office and trying not to cry. I am reading a PDF file of Bethany's Calendar by Elaine Marie Cooper Author. It is so heartbreaking but I love the notes to self and notes to others after each chapter. And if I start to cry hope the others in the office don't think I'm strange but oh well life is like that and cancer is real and those of us that are affected by it do cry".

No, Bethany's story isn't mom's story but any one going through cancer or taking care of someone that does have cancer or another critical illness have similar heartaches and thoughts. I felt the author shared an honest and trueful account and even admitted that sometimes angry feelings were expressed.  

I want to share one more Facebook post I posted while reading " Bethany's Calendar" 
"Reading "Bethany's Calendar" by Elaine Cooper and I really am struck by this "note to others" at the end of one chapter
"Don't delay visiting those who the Lord draws you to see. You never know if it might be your last opportunity to be with them this side of eternity" 

This is my thought after reading the above note: How many times how we felt the urge to call or go see someone and we don't follow though and then we get that call that let's us know it is too late." 

I encourage everyone to read " Bethany's Calendar" whether you or someone you know is struggling with a critical illness or not, chances are you will soon.

I was given a pdf file by the author for an honest review and just as soon as the print book is available ( December 2014) I will be buying a couple of copies.


Judy said...

Great review Debbie! I really want to read this book now. Going on my wish list!

Judy B

Debbie Curto said...

Thanks Judy!