Staff Review/Becoming Strangers

Becoming Strangers by Louise Dean. 2004. (Fiction Dean.L)
Dorothy and George, married for 50 years, travel to a luxurious Carribean resort for their first vacation abroad. There they meet Jan and Annemieke, a middle-aged couple taking their last trip together before Jan succumbs to cancer. The paradisiacal setting cannot hide the strains in either marriage though. Dorothy is in the early stages of Alzheimer's and George is in denial about it. Jan has been dying for six years and Annemieke is tired of waiting to become a widow and get on with her life. Their problems don't prevent the couples from mingling with others at the resort and having a few adventures, including a skinny-dipping picnic and Annemieke's hilarious seduction of the resort's resident hippie. Dean deftly takes the measure of each couple without giving in to sentimentality, making the story ring true. (Mary B., Reader's Services)
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