Leila Summers
Author • Coach • Creative
HOME    |     MEMOIR    |     EXCERPT    |     PUBLISHING & BOOK COACHING    |     PERSONAL COACHING    |     BLOG
book cover It Rains In February: A Wife's Memoir of Love and Loss is a touchingly written memoir in the form of a posthumous letter to Ms. Summer's deceased husband. The prose is stunning and lush, rich with detail. As a reader, I could smell the flowers, the coffee, the cigarettes, the sea, and the death. The characters are richly drawn and undeniably real. I consider myself a fan of the memoir, and every word of this one rings true on the deepest emotional level. It is a work of unquestionable courage and vulnerability. One cannot help but be moved by the immense sacrifice this woman is willing to make for this man, her family, and the meaning of life, death and love. Ms. Summers also shows a biting grasp of the language. E-mails passed between the characters provide the reader with a wildly intimate look at a couple struggling with every duality imaginable: love and loss, joy and madness, friendship and intimacy and, ultimately, life and death. It will leave you questioning the meaning we attach to all of it. It Rains In February reads as a wrenching yet uplifting, brutal and gentle, hopeless and life-affirming story. If you're like me, you'll want to start it again as soon as you finish the first read. ~ John Duffy, Psy.D., clinical psychologist and author

One million people die from suicide every year worldwide according to the World Health Organisation. That's three thousand deaths a day or roughly one death every forty seconds. My forty seconds came on the 24th of February 2007 when my husband, Stuart, drowned himself at sea, leaving me widowed with two young daughters aged six and four. My book began as an account for them. I knew it wasn't an accident, even though the medics and police never suspected suicide. Stuart had been talking about ending his life for a year. His most recent suicide attempt had been only three weeks earlier. Afterwards, he explained that day as the most peaceful day of his life. Sitting next to the dam, he smoked his last cigarette. He drank a hundred sleeping pills and did a final check to make sure everything would look like an accident. The last thing he remembered was swimming out into the crystal clear water. He said that he was no longer scared of dying, that there was nothing scary about it. Living was the scary thing.

It Rains In February: A Wife's Memoir of Love and Loss is available from Amazon.com.