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Two Months – Gail Schimmel

“Two Months” is a compelling and emotionally charged novel by Gail Schimmel, published in 2016. Schimmel is an accomplished South African author known for her exploration of complex interpersonal relationships and the human condition. In “Two Months,” she delves into themes of family, secrets, and the profound impact of one fateful decision.

Set in the vibrant and diverse city of Johannesburg, the story revolves around the lives of two families, the Steins and the Cohens. The novel opens with a tragic car accident that shatters the Steins’ world. In the blink of an eye, their beloved daughter, Mia, is fatally injured, and her life hangs in the balance. Their world is plunged into chaos, and they are faced with an unimaginable choice: donate Mia’s heart to another child in need or watch her slip away.

As the plot unfolds, we witness the emotional rollercoaster experienced by the Steins as they grapple with this life-altering decision. The novel explores the profound moral and ethical dilemmas they confront. Schimmel artfully weaves a narrative that delves into the complexities of organ donation, medical ethics, and the emotional turmoil that engulfs the characters.

The Cohens, on the other hand, represent the family on the receiving end of this agonizing choice. Their daughter, Rachel, is the recipient of Mia’s heart. The novel provides a unique perspective on the impact of this miraculous gift, as the Cohens navigate their own set of challenges, including the emotional weight of carrying a part of Mia within Rachel.

“Two Months” excels in its portrayal of the deep emotional connections between the characters. The Steins and Cohens are authentically depicted, each with their individual struggles and secrets. The narrative takes the reader on an intimate journey, unraveling the complexities of grief, guilt, and the transformative power of love.

Gail Schimmel’s writing is evocative and compassionate, drawing the reader into the lives of these two families as they confront their respective destinies. The novel is a poignant exploration of the human condition, reminding us of the fragility of life and the profound impact one decision can have on multiple lives.

Through its exploration of the choices made by the Steins and the Cohens, “Two Months” prompts readers to reflect on their own values, beliefs, and the moral gray areas that exist in medical ethics and organ donation. It’s a story that lingers in the mind long after the last page is turned, leaving a deep appreciation for the resilience of the human spirit and the enduring power of love, even in the face of tragedy.

In conclusion, “Two Months” is a thought-provoking and emotionally charged novel that shines a spotlight on the interconnectedness of our lives and the indomitable human spirit. Gail Schimmel’s skillful storytelling and the exploration of complex themes make this book a compelling and memorable read.