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We All Want Impossible Things

"Radiant with life and the magic of lifelong friendship, this fiercely funny, devastatingly moving novel will leave you longing to hug and laugh with your loved ones."

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LoveReading Says

LoveReading Says

What an incredible, shattering, unforgettable story. Catherine Newman’s We All Want Impossible Things takes in all life’s joys, absurdities, devastations, and the pain of letting go. It’s tender, bold, brilliant on female friendship, and hilariously, heart-wrenchingly honest —the kind of book you’ll want to thrust on all your friends. Talking of which…

Edi and Ash have been friends for some forty years. They’ve gone through everything life can through at you together, from childhood and crazy teenage exploits, through to marriage and kids, with Ash now facing the unsettling complications of redefining her relationship with her soon-to-be ex-husband. And now, when Edi is diagnosed with terminal cancer, they’re facing Edi’s death together.

The realities of hospice life are brutal, absurdly funny and get to heart of what it is to be alive. “It’s like you walk in under a giant banner that says, EVERYONE HERE IS DYING, but then most of the time you’re just making small talk and quesadillas, trying to find something to watch on Netflix, or wondering if there’s any pie left.”  As one character sagely responds, “I mean, isn’t that just life though… “We’re doing all the things, enjoying ourselves where we can, even though we’re all just going to die at the end of it.”

As the Fiddler on the Roof soundtrack blares from a neighbouring room, Ash’s life becomes attuned to Edi in ever deeper ways. They’ve always been there for each other, and now is the ultimate incarnation of that bond. Painfully accurate on the experience of seeing a loved one die, this novel is filled with love, truth and an equally accurate representation of the hysterical humour that often springs from the most devastating, absurd experiences. In a word, though, We All Want Impossible Things is breath-takingly beautiful. 

Joanne Owen

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