Review: Minus Me by Mameve Medwed

Title: Minus Me by Mameve Medwed
Publisher: Alcove Press
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
Length: 331 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


Her life turned upside down by a grim diagnosis, a small-town Maine woman sets about writing a “How To” life manual for her handsome yet hapless husband in a novel Elinor Lipman (Good Riddance, On Turpentine Lane) calls “smart, funny-quirky, and so very satisfying.”

Annie and her devoted but comically incompetent childhood sweetheart Sam are the owners and operators of Annie’s, a gourmet sandwich shop, home to the legendary Paul Bunyan Special Sandwich–their “nutritionally challenged continual source of income and marital harmony and local fame.”

But into their mostly charmed marriage comes the scary medical diagnosis for Annie–and the overwhelming challenge of finding a way to help Sam go on without her. Annie decides to leave Sam step-by-step instructions for a future without her, and considers her own replacement in his heart and their bed.Her best-laid plans grind to a halt with the unexpected appearance of Ursula, Annie’s Manhattan diva of a mother, who brings her own brand of chaos and disruption into their lives.

Minus Me is a poignant and hilarious novel about the bonds of marriage, the burdens of maternal love, and the courage to face mortality, “with an ending readers will cherish (Caroline Leavitt, Pictures of You).”


Minus Me by Mameve Medwed is a charming novel that is poignant and surprisingly uplifting.

Annie Stevens-Strauss receives a diagnosis that she tries but fails to tries to tell her husband of seventeen years Sam. Since he is pretty hopeless with household tasks, she writes a manual full of helpful hints that range from the everyday to finding love again. Meanwhile, Annie puts off further testing until her self-absorbed mother, Ursula, makes a rare appearance in their small town in Maine. When Annie is swept off to New York for a doctor’s appointment by Ursula, will their unexpected time together be the best or worst thing for their fractured relationship? And what effect will her extended time away from Sam have on their marriage?

Annie and Sam own a  very popular sandwich shop so they spend most of their time together. Despite their almost magically happy relationship, they have experienced heartbreaking losses. Annie has always brushed off her best friend Rachel and Ursula’s observations that she spoils Sam too much. It is not until she receives her diagnosis that she realizes that Sam might not be equipped for the next stage in life.  In addition to writing the manual, Annie decides to not worry him until she receives confirmation of her doctor’s diagnosis.

Minus Me is a well-written novel with an engaging storyline and entertaining characters. Annie’s unexpected health crisis proves to be a surprising journey of self-discovery and healing. Mameve Medwed  concludes this winsome novel with a heartwarming a epilogue that is sure to delight readers. 

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Filed under Alcove Press, Contemporary, Mameve Medwed, Minus Me, Rated B, Review, Women's Fiction

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