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Coming Home Again
by Philip R. Sullivan
About this Book
Most of us believe it takes a lifetime to live a life. Yet barely halfway through, and Jud Gerard learned that this was going to be for him pretty much the whole ball of waxnot enough time left to even start to address the failures he felt so keenly.
Coming Home Again is, in part, an account of how Jud went about dealing with the premature closure of his life. But far more, it is the story of how his friends managed to stare a reflection of their own mortality straight in the eye long enough to support their friend on his journey home.
About the Author
Coming Home Again is Philip R. Sullivan's third novel. In addition to his private practice, Doctor Sullivan has taught clinical psychiatry and neuroscience at Harvard Medical School for many years. He lives in a countrified Massachusetts setting where he has also raised African sheep.
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Philip R. Sullivan's second novel, Coming Home Again, is the story of Jud Gerarda man in the prime of life who discovers he has terminal cancerrelating how he makes his way home again with some help from his friends.
It is Jud's partner Joanna who lies at the very heart of this account. Although her caring efforts are often frustrated by Jud's tendency to deal with his terminal illness by withdrawing from others, she manages to hang in there with him in extremely touching fashion, despite episodes of self-consoling behavior that may take readers by surprise.
Both Jud and Joanna come to life as the story unfolds, leaving us with the feeling that they are real people responding to their adversity in ways we can appreciate and learn from. The other characters, including April, John, and Doctor Morley, also blossom into people we might well know. This chronicle carries us into the sort of experience each of us may one day have to face; but through the tears, one comes away feeling both strengthened and uplifted.
We asked Dr. Sullivan why he'd decided to write a story about dying, rather than one that led to eventual triumph over a life-threatening illness. He laughed and answered: "When I was a boy, I always dreamed of becoming a medical hero saving lives. But when I actually became a doctor, experience eventually taught me that life itself is, as the saying goes, a terminal illness. And I came to especially admire the folks who learned to look all of life in the eye, including the part where they are 'coming home again.' These are for me among the truest of heroes, and that's why I was drawn to writing a story about one of them."
Coming Home Again was published by Foremost Press. It can be ordered through local bookstores and at ForemostPress.com, Amazon and Barnes & Noble.com.
188 pp, $12.97