It is March 13, 2020 in New York City. Diana O’Toole is building her career at Sotheby’s. Her boyfriend Finn, a surgical resident, is about to propose. The couple is going on vacation to the Galápagos Islands. Life is right on track. That is until the mysterious coronavirus starts to cause shutdowns and concerns that require Finn to stay home as his hospital needs all medical personnel to be ready for an expected onslaught of infected patients. Diana decides to go on the vacation alone. When she arrives, the islands go on lockdown and she is stuck. But stuck in paradise. While Finn is dealing with the unimaginable horror of a rapidly spreading virus, Diana is introduced to incredible beauty and meets people who cause her to take a fresh look at her life. “It’s almost as if I had to stop running in order to see myself clearly, and what I see is a person who’s been driving toward a goal for so long she can’t remember why she set it in the first place.”
Wish You Were Here brings the reader into the earliest days of the Covid-19 pandemic and no one felt the strain and sense of the unknown more than healthcare workers. It’s a strong story that is told from Diana’s point-of-view. She goes through a tough journey that changes her. I was a bit hesitant to read a book that brings all the emotions of this crisis to the surface. Especially since we’re still living through it. So it might be too soon for some but for me it turned out to be a worthwhile read from an excellent storyteller.
Many thanks to NetGalley, Ballantine Books | Random House and author Jodi Picoult for the opportunity to read this powerful book in advance of its publication.
Rated 4.25 out of 5 stars.
Publication Date: November 30, 2021.
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