One Book. One Corridor.

Inside the O'Briens

Lisa Genova

"[Genova's] compassionate storytelling is full of human emotion, all the way from boiling rage to love and gratitude, to despair." -   Vancouver Sun

Joe O'Brien is a forty-four-year-old police officer from the Irish Catholic neighborhood of Charlestown, Massachusetts. A devoted husband, proud father of four children in their twenties, and respected officer, Joe begins experiencing bouts of disorganized thinking, uncharacteristic temper outbursts, and strange, involuntary movements. He initially attributes these episodes to the stress of his job, but as these symptoms worsen, he agrees to see a neurologist and is handed a diagnosis that will change his and his family's lives forever: Huntington's Disease.

Huntington's is a lethal neurodegenerative disease with no treatment and no cure. Each of Joe's four children has a 50 percent chance of inheriting their father's disease, and a simple blood test can reveal their genetic fate. While watching her potential future in her father's escalating symptoms, twenty-one-year-old daughter Katie struggles with the questions this test imposes on her young adult life. Does she want to know? What if she's gene positive? Can she live with the constant anxiety of not knowing?

As Joe's symptoms worsen and he's eventually stripped of his badge and more, Joe struggles to maintain hope and a sense of purpose, while Katie and her siblings must find the courage to either live a life "at risk" or learn their fate.


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One Corridor, Reading Together

One Book, One Corridor was created by Whistler Public Library, Pemberton & District Public Library, and Squamish Public Library in collaboration with Armchair Books. The initiative is designed to unite the communities over a good book.

Copies of Inside the O'Briens can be borrowed from the libraries or can be purchased from Armchair Books in Whistler at a 15 per cent discount.

Book discussions will take place in all three communities. 

Squamish: Thursday, October 20 at 6:30 p.m.

Whistler: Wednesday, October 26 at 7 p.m.

Pemberton: Thursday, October 27 at 7 p.m.


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