A Life in Parts Book Club

Waiting in the dentist’s office for my name to be called, I decided to flip through Dr. Oller’s reading materials.  Usually I reach for a magazine since the wait time is next-to-nothing if any at all, but this time a work of fiction titled A Life in Parts written by Vicki Bennington and Daniel Brannan caught my eye.  Flipping to the back cover, a picture of a striking woman intrigued me especially after I read her legs and portions of her hands had been amputated.  My vision, corrected with contacts, still made me question what I was seeing so I pulled the book closer to my face.  What I saw was a beautiful, joyous woman with no trace of any suffering, scarring, or self-pity.  Soon my name was called, so I begged Monica, my dental hygienist and fellow author groupie, if I might be able to borrow this book.
A quick-read, the fact that this work of non-fiction revolved around the life of a local Midwesterner made it even more engaging.  Abruptly faced with toxic shock syndrome after a freak occurrence in her home,  Loretta Goebel faces life as an amputee.  A wife, mother of two, devoted friend, and volunteer, A Life in Parts relives Goebel’s journey to a new normalcy with fierce determination and continued faith despite the obstacles and eventual losses which accrue along the way.
For a book club’s convenience, study questions have been included in the back of A Life in Parts for discussion.  Since the ideal of familial traditions and gatherings proves motivating for Goebel throughout her healing, a meal filled with comfort food- chicken, mashed potatoes, and corn- which greeted her at her arrival home from the hospital would be appropriate for the menu.

A Life in Parts