Publication date: 2006
$24.95Add to cart
A masterpiece by one of the Wests best-loved authors
Just when Sacramento journalist Marty Martinez thinks his life cant get any worse, it does. His beloved son has died of AIDS, his wife has divorced him and joined a cult, and his daughter blames him for the disintegration of their family. Then a chance medical examination reveals that he has prostate cancer.
Marty faces his new role as a cancer patient with awkward grit and desperation. He is a sympathetic, utterly convincing character seeking faith in a Catholic Church as troubled as he is. He brings increased intensity to his career as he investigates a far-reaching political scandal, reunites his family in unexpected ways, and finds love with a fellow cancer patient.
Grace Period is a profound and sometimes hilarious novel about living with serious illness. Marty copes with fear and the painful, sometimes embarrassing, treatment of his disease, but instead of winding down his life he finds fresh purpose and a joyful new love. Haslam brilliantly depicts the complexities of everyday life and the intricate, sometimes tortured bonds of family and friendship.
In Grace Period, Haslam shows us that existence at the precarious edge of life offers not only pain and loss but hope, a chance at redemption, love, and even happiness. Grace Period is his masterwork.
"Not only does Haslam address the intimate and often embarrassing issues associated with prostate cancer, but he offers a brave, honest, ethical, and sensitive protagonist who often struggles with issues relating to his Hispanic culture and upbringing....the novel's appeal grows in proportion to Marty's development as a complex character who learns how to experience life to its fullest." Kellie Gillespie, Library Journal, August 2006
"Perhaps I am simply a sucker for stories of perseverance and desperate love, but arent we all? Haslam shows us that grace can indeed conquer the indignities and impoverishments of dying. By the books end, I was genuinely moved, and I suspect you will be, too. Adam Hill, San Francisco Chronicle, 12 September 2006
[Haslam] loves literary places, and he has as sure-handed a grasp on Californias Great Central Valley as anyone writing, both what it was and what it is rapidly becoming. Id say his closest counterpart is the legendary western sage Wallace Stegner. Jack Hicks, author of The Literature of California
Haslam is a valuable writer; no, he is a dearly needed writer because he has brought to the reading public a part of California whose stories need to be toldthe Central Valley. Gary Soto, author of Amnesia in a Republican County
I dont know what I love best about Gerald Haslams writing: the validation of his own turf, his marvelous sense of history and metaphor, or his zany and poignant characters. Julie Robertson, Western American Literature
"Haslam writes an unflinching story, rich in details about living with (and dying with) cancer. It's a book every cancer victim should read as a study on how to face death." Sam Bauman, Nevada Appeal
"Many thanks to Gerald Haslam for a novel full of truths, centered around a relationship that touched me deeply." - Joan Price
"A rich story of relationships lost and found, crises encountered, of death being faced with courage and awe." - Nimble Spirit