From Hyphen magazine: Abigal Licad reviews Moonface: A True Romance by Angela Balcita
I don’t usually read memoirs. For the most part, I distrust memoirs in the way that any person should distrust a half-baked pickup line delivered in some seedy dive. The handful that I've read have tended to (a) evince extreme narcissism by the author, or (b) have an offensively blatant self-promoting agenda. I muttered “amen” under my breath when New York Times books section columnist Neil Genzlinger bitched about how too many people who lead lives too insignificant manage to get books published.
So why did I pick up Moonface by Angela Balcita? Well, the back cover blurb says that the book is about the author’s experience with a kidney transplant, and it so happens that someone very close to me underwent one. That person, my best friend, was very mum about her whole experience. In fact, through her year-long ordeal of dialysis, searching for a donor, and surgery, we never talked much about her disease (which is more telling, I think, of the unspeakable difficulty of the experience rather than any lack of trust between us). So, wanting to know more of what my best friend went through, I started reading Balcita's book.
The thing, though, is that Balcita's book didn't really help me experience vicarious pain as I was expecting it to. This was no grab-your-tissues pity party. There were no long-drawn complaints about pain or fatigue, nor any extensive forays into the medical or physiological makings of kidney disease.
Instead of the depressing book I had anticipated, the book ended up being a fun and almost light-hearted read.