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Review: Good Riddance

June 21, 2013

Good Riddance

Author Cynthia Copeland thought she was happily married until a day in 2001 when she went to do research on her computer for a book she was working on.  Cynthia’s husband, T. J., had left a lot of pages open on the computer and when Cynthia went to close them, she ended up printing them instead.  She printed page after page of emails between her husband and his girlfriend.  She was devastated and confused and wasn’t sure what to do.  Good Riddance tells the story of her marriage and divorce.

It’s hard to say I “enjoyed” a story about a divorce – after all it is a very stressful time for those going through it – so I’ll say that I really appreciated Copeland’s graphic memoir.  After eighteen years of marriage, Copeland was blindsided by the emails she found and struggled through her divorce.  She was worried about her three children (who wouldn’t be?) and wanted to make things as easy as she could for them.  She had to learn to take care of herself and decide how she wanted to live the rest of her life.

Copeland is open and honest in Good Riddance and manages to avoid placing blame or wallowing in her grief.  Using humor and common sense, she learns to get on with her life but freely admits to mistakes she makes along the way.  Her wonderful illustrations enhance this gem of a graphic novel.  Good Riddance is the perfect book for those who enjoy graphic memoirs and for anyone coping with divorce.

Review copy provided by Abrams.  I am an Indiebound Affiliate.

24 Comments leave one →
  1. June 21, 2013 4:25 am

    I can’t imagine how disturbed she must have been to find those letters written to another woman by a man she had loved all of her life. She must have been beyond hurt and to have three children too. Terrible. Would like to read it.

  2. June 21, 2013 8:14 am

    Sounds depressing!

  3. Jennifer @ The Relentless Reader permalink
    June 21, 2013 8:52 am

    I’m always on the look out for a good graphic novel. I love reading them during readathons. I hadn’t heard of this one, it sounds great! Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

  4. June 21, 2013 9:44 am

    Wow. A friend of mine I just found out is going through something similar…. Not sure I could read that one.

  5. June 21, 2013 11:23 am

    Wow- I haven’t heard of this title but I’m intrigued by the graphic memoir format and subject matter. That must be devastating to find letters like that! But it sounds like the humor makes the story more palatable.

  6. June 21, 2013 11:28 am

    When life gives you lemons…the silver lining may be a humorous graphic memoir. Excellent review today, Kathy! 🙂

  7. June 21, 2013 11:56 am

    Hmm, I have to say you’ve made me interested in reading this! I don’t read graphic novels – only because I haven’t seen any that called out to me but this may be one to pick up.

  8. sandynawrot permalink
    June 21, 2013 12:37 pm

    I love graphic novels, they don’t always need to be upbeat. In fact, I think most of them I’ve read have been a little dark! Even though I’m not going through a divorce, I know plenty of people who are, and if reading this book would help me help them, then it would be a good thing.

  9. talesofwhimsy permalink
    June 21, 2013 1:12 pm

    Poor gal. How awful. The book sounds excellent though.

  10. June 21, 2013 4:48 pm

    Sounds like an excellent book, but as a child of divorce, not one that I’d like to read.

  11. June 21, 2013 6:36 pm

    I can imagine how much stress the divorce would have been for the author but I also appreciate that she tries to use humor when talking about a stressful phase of her life.

  12. June 21, 2013 7:36 pm

    Sounds like a read that many can relate to…thanks for your review!

  13. June 21, 2013 8:55 pm

    Sad, but many women…and men, can and have felt her pain.
    Sounds like a hard read, but the humor softens it a little.

  14. Patty permalink
    June 21, 2013 9:19 pm

    Wow…this sounds really intense!

  15. June 21, 2013 9:32 pm

    Our first close couple friends just divorced, two small girls. So sad. Although it might be easier to handle in graphic form I just can’t be interested in someone else’s problems at the moment. Unless they are the same ones I’m having 😉 Isn’t that typical?

  16. June 22, 2013 12:02 am

    I’m not sure I would ordinarily pick up a memoir with such a stressful subject, but I can see where the graphic format might lighten it up a bit.

  17. June 22, 2013 6:07 am

    I like graphic memoirs, even tough topics like divorce. I’ll have to see if my library has a copy.

  18. June 22, 2013 8:49 am

    This sounds like it’s well written. I’ve never heard of a graphic memoir before.

  19. June 22, 2013 3:09 pm

    I think this would make for a good read. I like that she doesn’t place blame but just basically shares her story.

  20. June 24, 2013 9:21 am

    Depressing but this happens often enough. I agree with Staci.

  21. bookingmama permalink
    June 24, 2013 10:25 am

    We picked this one up at BEA? I’ll have to sort through my books and take a peek.

  22. June 25, 2013 1:01 pm

    It’s been so long since I picked up a graphic memoir — think I’m long overdue. Sounds like a tough subject matter, but worth the read.

  23. June 26, 2013 2:40 pm

    Thanks for covering this one. I know someone going through a divorce right now, and I’ll let her know about it.

  24. Jennifer permalink
    July 2, 2013 10:55 am

    Interesting premise for a graphic memoir. It seems so incredibly personal and yet that is what makes a good memoir. They have to be raw and honest. People show their vulnerabilities and admit their mistakes and readers everywhere get to benefit from that. It makes you care about the author and therefore relate to the book even when the situation is nothing like your actual real life circumstances.

    And the circumstances in this book do sound quite a bit painful.

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