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The Truth About Suzie

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Childhood neighbors Suzie and Cecily lost touch when Suzie moved away after fifth grade. Through social media, they rekindle their offbeat friendship when they find they are simultaneously fighting cancer.

But Cecily has just learned from a reality television show that Suzie has died—of complications due to alcohol and drug abuse. Did Suzie really have cancer at all? Or was she, as the Dr. Dick show makes it appear, a compulsive liar and an alcoholic living in denial to the end?

Their relationship, and the truth about Suzie, is revealed through Facebook updates, emails and prose. Technology is both a story-telling device and an accomplice, facilitating the relationships and complicating them.

The Truth About Suzie explores the threads that hold us together and asks the reader what makes a relationship real. Does the virtual mirror of social media distort us, or do we distort it to reflect what pleases us about ourselves and hide what doesn't?

350 pages, Paperback

First published October 15, 2014

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About the author

Erica Rimlinger

2 books1 follower

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5 stars
13 (44%)
4 stars
8 (27%)
3 stars
7 (24%)
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Displaying 1 - 9 of 9 reviews
December 4, 2014
4.5 stars
I LOVED this book. It was such a great novel. I am still thinking about it. It is serious and funny and original and such a great debut! It is about so many things, but it does so in such a way that is causes the reader to connect to the character...to be present in the story. I really liked this book...4.5 stars
1 review
October 26, 2014
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, from beginning to end. Cecily is strong, scared, witty and vulnerable. She is relatable, the girl you went to college with, interned with, work out with at the gym. I love that she found courage and strength from someone from her past, someone she thought couldn't be more different. This book is a great read and I'm looking forward to future works and will recommend this book to everyone!
Profile Image for Kathy.
19 reviews6 followers
October 24, 2014
Ms. Rimlinger is a debut author whose writing is worth checking out. The Truth About Susie is a compelling book that you're still thinking about after you finish the last page with a great sense of humor woven in. Hoping to see more works by this author, have put her on my favorite authors list. Check this one out, you won't be disappointed.
January 26, 2016
Cecily Murphy is scared. She has just been diagnosed with breast cancer, and posts her diagnosis on Facebook. To her surprise, she receives a private message from Suzie London, a former neighbor and childhood friend whom she hasn't heard from in many years. Suzie tells Cecily that she is also battling cancer, and the two women begin to walk side by side through the process together through emails and posts. Suzie supports Cecily with love and humor in just the right amounts , and Cecily feels blessed by this renewed friendship . At the same time, Cecily has reconnected with Jack, a sweet guy she met in college, and in the middle of the toughest battle of her life, she falls in love for the first time. Jack loves her and thinks she is incredible, with or without her beautiful red hair.

But then Cecily discovers that Suzie has died in the worst way possible: on a reality show. What's worse is that the show claims that Suzie died not from cancer, but as a result of alcoholism. Cecily is confused and determined to put the pieces of Suzie's life together to find out who her friend really was and what happened to her. She and Jack travel to the West Coast where Suzie lived, and what follows is a story of friendship, redemption , and the complicated nature of some of the people who touch our lives the deepest.

I loved this book! The format of alternating between past and present and between email messages and narrative may be a different way to present a story than most readers are used to, but it works for this story; it allows the reader to see the growing friendship through Cecily and Suzie's unedited correspondence. I closed this book reflecting on the many imperfections that make up the people we love.
Profile Image for Katherine Jones.
Author 2 books73 followers
February 18, 2015
From the outset, I was intrigued by the premise of The Truth About Suzie, and this–coupled with the fact that my sweet, young (34) sis-in-law had just been diagnosed with breast cancer–compelled me to take a look.

While I liked the way the opening gambit brought me right into Cecily’s life, I also found those first few pages a bit confusing. It was the narrative order that tripped me up–it didn’t unfold linearly. Then there was a bigger chronological jump back to over a year before when Cecily was first diagnosed with cancer, as revealed by way of her social media postings. I found this and some head-hopping (when the narrative point of view switches from one character’s perspective to another without explanation or break) a bit distracting.


These are on the whole fairly minor issues. What I would choose to focus on is the author’s sassy take on a serious subject. The Truth About Suzie is filled quirky characters as well as the wisdom and self-deprecating humor of someone who’s been there. I have a hunch that if I was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness and craved the perspective of a survivor, this book would be just what the doctor ordered.
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733 reviews37 followers
January 6, 2016
Interesting take on friends once lost and now found via social media and whether we really "know" those long lost friends.

Suzie is there via Facebook, supporting her friend Cecily as they both fight cancer. The reader is led on this journey through a lot of emails, Facebook posts and messages in addition to the usual form of story telling. The conversations between the friends were what you'd expect from two people going through the same things ~ supportive, loving, sympathetic when necessary and full of 'you can do this' encouragement when needed.

The book begins as we see Cecily trying to find out the truth behind Suzie's story and her realizations and understanding as the story moves along. Quite a different type of story, but one that is probably much more common since social media has exploded in all our lives. I'll be looking forward to reading future books by Ms. Rimlinger.
15 reviews
October 23, 2014
I love this book! It's both funny and poignant, and it's a quick, light read. That may sound surprising given the fact that the main character is battling breast cancer, but the book definitely gives you permission to laugh through sadness. More than just a story about a woman with breast cancer, The Truth About Suzie is an intriguing exploration of friendship in the age of social media and -- even more interesting to me -- tackles the idea of reconciling what a relationship means to you and what value it holds if and when you find out the person isn't exactly what you thought, and that they're not perfect.

Also, if you're in a book club, this is a great book for discussion on many different levels.
1 review
December 31, 2014
Great story. I think this book has a special place for female readers. I felt so connected to the main character the entire time I was reading the book. I can't wait to buy this for my friends and family members. And can't wait to read Mrs. Rimlinger's future books! No pressure Mrs. R.
Displaying 1 - 9 of 9 reviews

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