The Last Labour of the Heart

Aunt Lou had decided to die. The thought had got into her head and there was no getting it out. So said the nurse who called Benjamin Miles from Minneapolis. Lou had stopped eating. Wouldn’t take a bite. She was shed- ding pounds the way a dog sheds fur. She’s skin, bones and sheer determination, said the nurse. She wants to die and she doesn’t want anyone trying to stop her.
The Last Labour of the Heart is the story of two lives intertwined in surprising ways and becomes in the end a meditation on life and loss, death and hope. The novel, Paul Vasey’s 10th, is set in Brooklyn, New York, Ephrata, Pennsylvania, Toms Creek, Virginia, Minne- apolis and Windsor, Ontario. It covers the period from just before the First World War to the turn of the 21st Century. Through intricate flashbacks, the book follows the life of 92-year-old Lucille (Lou) Sutter from the death of her parents when she was a child through her long years of marriage to her final days in a nursing home in Minneapolis. As he sits by his aunt’s bedside on the final day of her life, Benjamin Miles finds himself musing about his own life, and his long relationship with his Godmother who is the last link with his past. The novel was inspired by the author’s aunt who spent the final five years of her life in a Minneapolis nursing home.

Posted in News, Reviews & Awards, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , .