Praise for Beauty and the Breast

“I read Beauty and the Breast nonstop: the pages turn themselves. Horror, humor, humaneness, fear, fatigue, love, honesty, bravery, and so much more, including even charm—all movingly mingled. The book (science and sensibility) is the triumph of an ordeal overcome and transcended.”

—Cynthia Ozick, author of Critics, Monsters, Fanatics, and other Literary Essays

“I LOVE IT!!  I could not put it down. Merrill Joan Gerber tells the story without a drop of feeling sorry for herself. She never loses her sense of humor. I’ve read a lot of breast cancer books, but hers is so fresh, so endearing, there’s nothing else like it.”

—Judy Blume, author of Are you There, God? It’s Me, Margaret, and In the Unlikely Event

“Merrill Joan Gerber is one of the finest writers of our time. There is no way to stop reading this very moving, compelling, sad but affirmative memoir. Whatever she touches, she illuminates.”

—David Evanier, author of Woody: The Biography

“Beauty and the Breast could be one of those books like Dr. Spock’s Baby and Child Care that just doesn’t quit selling because there is always another group that needs to know. The voice throughout the narrative is so superb. In some ways, the book feels more like a novel than a memoir. The pictures are extremely, extremely important. The interesting thing is that, at the end, the book becomes less about breast cancer and escaping death as it is about mortality and the seasons of life.”

—Dr. Dean Paschal, Emergency Room physician, New Orleans

“While reading Beauty and the Breast, I am close to tears all the time. Merrill’s incredible clarity and honesty is profound and necessary. The details, the photographs, the emotions make me feel as if it’s me going through this. It’s a real page-turner.”

—Mary Trunk, documentary film maker (Merrill Joan Gerber is one of four women artists in her film, Lost in Living)

Beauty and the Breast will pour into a reader just as it poured from the author into her keyboard. It is hard to break away. Her voice is so powerful and intimate … she has borne witness in a voice that is unique and yet will reach everyone who reads it just where they are in their own lives. A beautiful and irresistible book.”

—Charlotte Zoe Walker, author of Condor and Hummingbird and winner of an O. Henry Award

“With fluid writing and pitch-perfect timing, Merrill Joan Gerber has written a remarkable story of a woman’s breast cancer journey. The photos and paintings rendered by the author of her treatments, her doctors, her husband and children add a wonderful visual layer to the tale. The author draws a heartwarming picture of family and friends who stay at her side and from whom she draws comfort, hope and delight. Gerber shares humorous takes on much that goes awry and offers many moments of wonder, joy and gratitude as well.”

—Nancy Levinson, author of Moments of Dawn, an Alzheimer’s Memoir and a two-time breast cancer survivor

“Beauty and the Breast has such a wonderful combination of humor, love of life, and sheer terror. It’s about breast cancer, but so much more. And it is about a long and happy marriage and the cancer that doesn’t interrupt it. Bravo!”

—Dr. Madeleine Moskowitz, Doctor of Psychology and breast cancer survivor.