If I could give this book more than 5 stars, I would. I have it in paperback and the cover is just absolutely stunning, and it’s just the smallest hint of how great the book is going to be.
In Still Breathing we meet Lizzie, who after losing her husband after a long illness, hears the call to go to Africa and help. At 69 years old, it’s a bit scary to think of trekking across continents, but the Pastor who inspired the call to go to Uganda has the perfect job for Lizzie.
A bit naive to the world, she isn’t sure what to expect, especially when she runs into issues before she even lands. Then it seems from the moment she touches down, she is faced with multiple setbacks. But Lizzie is a strong woman, and she keeps moving forward. From her first issue, she meets Dembe, a street boy who is kind and smart. He helps her get to where she needs to be going. We see him all throughout the book and I find myself as attached to him as Lizzie is.
As Lizzie navigates the issues that arise in trying to set up a library for the kids, she handles it all with the gusto of a woman who has lived. While she might not know how things are done locally, she does them her way, and it earns her great respect from the locals. Everyone that meets Lizzie is impressed with her know-how, with her strength and perseverance, with her ability to get things done, and I too, am a big fan of hers, so much so, that I’m not ready to let her go.
Fournier has done a beautiful job in writing Still Breathing, from the characters who are rich in detail to the setting. The reader can picture each location that Lizzie visits, from the school to the market, it’s all described in vivid detail. Lizzie is an inspiration to all of us, in learning to let go, in following your dreams, and in never letting your age stand in your way. Exceptionally well done!