Everyone has a breaking point. Is this marriage based on unconditional love or an unhealthy obsession?
Susan Branch’s life revolves around the care of her charming and inscrutable husband John, a man born into wealth and prestige who lost his family’s fortune when his mysterious chronic illnesses left him bedridden. Together they live a decrepit existence beholden to the current owners of his family’s former estate.
After years of devoting herself to John’s care, Susan is worn out and frustrated. Yet she is determined to scrape together whatever resources she can to keep John comfortable and happy. This includes stealing Demerol from the doctor’s office where she works to feed John’s ever-increasing need for pain medication.
As John’s condition continues to puzzle doctors, Susan begins to notice strange objects appearing around her house. Ever wary of creepy Old Pete, the groundskeeper, Susan decides to confront the elderly man and put an end to his snooping for good.
John suffers a critical emergency, but he is saved and is soon released from the hospital. His health begins to improve, and Susan dreams of a normal life, but her hope for a miracle transforms into a nightmare one fateful afternoon when she discovers the true cause of John’s sickness.
Sick was, well, sick… for lack of a better word. The beginning was slow; I was introduced to Suze, John, their current living conditions, and how they got there. It was interesting, and more than a little strange. I wasn’t sure if I should sympathize with Suze or pity her.
As the story went on it became more and more compelling. The story really was quite short, so it didn’t take long to read. Even so, I found my reading speed quickening as I got further and further into the plot. I knew something was very strange, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it until the big reveal at the end. Then everything clicked into place.
I really enjoyed the ending of Sick. All the pent up frustration and mystery came to a (pretty epic) conclusion. It ended the novella so perfectly.
Sick is one of the more mature book I have read, but not in an overly obvious way. It was rather low key, and that made it all the more enjoyable to read. Nothing was overly sexualized, yet there was an undertone of love that was both disturbing and beautiful at the same time.
I didn’t really enjoy the first half of the novella, just because of how slow the pace was ad how much information I had to absorb in such a short amount of pages. Even so, I am looking forward to reading the sequel, Sicker.
I am going to give sick three out of five hearts.