Tuesday 15 October 2019

Blog Tour Book Review: Hug Everyone You Know by Antoinette Truglio Martin

Hug Everyone You Know
Antoinette Truglio Martin

Publisher: She Writes Press
Publication date: 3rd October 2017
Genre: Memior
Pages: 325
Format read: eBook
Source: Courtesy of Women on Writing blog tours


Antoinette Martin believed herself to be a healthy and sturdy woman—that is, until she received a Stage 1 breast cancer diagnosis. Cancer is scary enough for the brave, but for a wimp like Martin, it was downright terrifying. Martin had to swallow waves of nausea at the thought of her body being poisoned, and frequently fainted during blood draws and infusions. To add to her terror, cancer suddenly seemed to be all around her. In the months following her diagnosis, a colleague succumbed to cancer, and five of her friends were also diagnosed.

Though tempted, Martin knew she could not hide in bed for ten months. She had a devoted husband, daughters, and a tribe of friends and relations. Along with work responsibilities, there were graduations, anniversaries, and roller derby bouts to attend, not to mention a house to sell and a summer of beach-bumming to enjoy. In order to harness support without scaring herself or anyone else, she journaled her experiences and began to e-mail the people who loved her: the people she called My Everyone. She kept them informed and reminded all to 'hug everyone you know' at every opportunity. Reading the responses became her calming strategy. Ultimately, with the help of her community, Martin found the courage within herself to face cancer with perseverance and humor.

I don’t know of anyone who hasn’t been touched by cancer in some way.

Antoinette Truglio Martin has written a heartfelt memoir of her journey through breast cancer treatment.
Right when life was at its busiest; the Martins were selling their home, their youngest was going off to college and Antoinette was contemplating changing jobs, she gets a call that her recent mammogram showed something suspicious and she needed to have it checked. And so starts Antoinette’s journey!

Antoinette decides to journal her treatment as a way of getting all her pent up feelings and emotions out. These journal entries along with emails to and from family and friends form part of this memoir.
Antoinette explains the different levels of cancer in an easy to understand language but it’s not all medical procedures and jargon. Antoinette lightens the book with family memories, weekends with friends and antics of her dog Petie.

Antoinette has some sound advice for others undergoing treatment; keeping your close group of friends to lean on if needed, sending updates by email so you are not continually explaining your treatment, don’t let the cancer define you, speak up if you are not happy with something.

It feels strange to say ‘I couldn’t put this book down’ for a memoir (they are not usually my preferred reading) but that is how I felt. I kept saying ‘I will just read for a bit longer.’ Antoinette’s voice is inviting and friendly. It’s as though she is there with you having a conversation.

Hug Everyone You Know is a story of friendship, hope and love. A story of survival and strength in the face of adversity.
If you know someone who is or has undergone cancer treatment I urge you to read Hug Everyone You Know.


My rating  4/5


Photo credit: Goodreads
Antoinette Truglio Martin is a life-long Long Islander, teacher, wife, mother, daughter, and friend. She is the author of Hug Everyone You Know: A Year of Community, Courage, and Cancer—a memoir chronicling her first year battling breast cancer as a wimpy patient. Personal experience essays and excerpts of her memoir were published in Bridges, Visible Ink, and The Southampton Review. 
Martin proudly received her MFA in creative writing and literature from Stony Brook/Southampton University in 2016. Antoinette had also written the children's picture book, Famous Seaweed Soup (Albert Whitman and Company), and was a regular columnist for local periodicals Parent Connections (In a Family Way) and Fire Island Tide (Beach Bumming). 
Her blog, Stories Served Around The Table, tells family tales and life's musings. She lives in her hometown of Sayville, New York with her husband, Matt, and is never far from her “Everyone” and the beaches she loves. Since being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in 2012, she strives to not let cancer dictate her life. 

Please stop by the other posts on the Hug Everyone You Know Blog Tour 


1 comment:

  1. Great review, not a book I could personally read, but one I'm sure will help others.