Thursday, February 2, 2012

Reading While Writing...Cheap Cabernet, a Memoir

If your looking for a book that will stay alive in your memory for weeks, months, years to come, "Cheap Cabernet" is the perfect memoir for you.

The cover art is what caught my eye at first. Burgundy wineglass stains over the photo of two friends, as though you left your glass on the book after reading it last night...

Then I saw Iris Rainer Dart, author of "Beaches" was quoted on the cover also. That got me excited that "Cheap Cab" would be a good read, yet it also made me wary. Would "Cheap Cabernet" be a wonderfully, painful story too? But Cathie Beck didn't write a fictional novel. She wrote a memoir. Was I willing to read a wonderfully, painful TRUE LIFE story?

Although I'm a la la land purist by nature - I only go for sweet, happy endings - I decided to give "Cheap Cab" a try. An engrossing, page turning read, I'm glad I did.

Cheap Cabernet opens up with the placement of an newspaper advertisement for WOW - Women On the Way. Cathie Beck's unique idea to find friendship fast. I can't believe she had the thought/guts to do something so out of the ordinary, but thankfully, for Denise - her soon to be best friend - Cathie did.

What has stayed with me the most about this memoir wasn't so much Beck's history, past struggles, life. Although an insight into the woman Cathie became and just as interesting as any of our own journey's, what made "Cheap Cabernet" so powerful was the way in which the two women came into each others lives and how their friendship took hold at just the right moment. I agree with Beck when she writes, had it been at any other time in either of their lives, what they needed from each other - the magic - wouldn't have been there.

And what was needed was instinctual. Cathie needed a friend, someone she could hang out and cut loose with. Denise needed a friend, someone who didn't want to do anything but. Denise knew her expiration date was soon approaching. And instead of sitting around wasting away, she wanted to live it up as best she could while she still could. Cathie came along at just the right time.

Everyone deserves someone they can count on, especially in the thick dirt of life. Not everyone finds that someone.

For those lesser reviews that gave "Cheap Cabernet" one or two stars because, and I quote..."the characters weren't believable"... This is a Memoir, not a fictional story of two people in a fairy tale land. This is real life. Was. Is. However you want to look at it. This book is about two real women and their brief lives together. What makes Denise and Cathie seem "unbelievable" was that they lived it up to the limit at times when lesser people would have been much more practical and passed up the opportunity.

If you wonder what Cuba, hot tubs, and blenders have to do with living it up Denise and Cathie style, grab a copy and a glass of wine. A $6 Cabernet preferably.