The Leisure Seeker: A Novel [NOOK Book]

Overview

In Michael Zadoorian's The Leisure Seeker the Robinas have shared a wonderful life for more than sixty years. Now in their eighties, Ella suffers from cancer and John has Alzheimer's. Yearning for one last adventure, the self-proclaimed "down-on-their-luck geezers" kidnap themselves from the adult children and doctors who seem to run their lives and steal away from their home in suburban Detroit on a forbidden vacation of rediscovery. With Ella as his vigilant copilot, John steers their '78 Leisure Seeker RV ...

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The Leisure Seeker: A Novel

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Overview

In Michael Zadoorian's The Leisure Seeker the Robinas have shared a wonderful life for more than sixty years. Now in their eighties, Ella suffers from cancer and John has Alzheimer's. Yearning for one last adventure, the self-proclaimed "down-on-their-luck geezers" kidnap themselves from the adult children and doctors who seem to run their lives and steal away from their home in suburban Detroit on a forbidden vacation of rediscovery. With Ella as his vigilant copilot, John steers their '78 Leisure Seeker RV along the forgotten roads of Route 66 toward Disneyland in search of a past they're having a damned hard time remembering. Yet Ella is determined to prove that, when it comes to life, you can go back for seconds—even when everyone says you can't.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

In this affecting road novel, an elderly married couple leave their Detroit home and take off in their camper for one last adventure together. Ella Robina has "more health problems than a third world country," and her husband, John, is suffering from progressive dementia. Despite protests from their adult children and doctors, Ella and John hit the road and head west to Disneyland. By day, they stop off at cheese-ball tourist attractions, and at night they relive old memories by watching slide shows of their previous family vacations. Along the way, they receive unexpected aid from a rueful goth teenager, outmaneuver some roadside predators, get stopped by the police and consider running for it, and have sex. The ultimate decision Ella makes might seem life affirming to some and a callous betrayal to others, but it's impossible to deny that Ella's wise, feisty voice turns what could be a sappy melodrama into an authentic and funny love story. (Feb.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
An elderly couple face down death by taking one last, thoroughly unauthorized vacation. The future holds nothing but shorter, bleaker days for both Ella and John Robina. Ella has refused chemotherapy and radiation treatment for her cancer. John suffers from Alzheimer's. So, after a lifetime spent worrying about how to keep body and soul and their family together, they sneak out of the Detroit suburb of Madison Heights, bound via Route 66 for Disneyland. Along the way they encounter smiling waitresses, variously helpful gas jockeys, road thieves and a particularly nice man with some obscene tattoos. Ella tosses her wig out the window, lets John order as many roadside hamburgers as he wants, treasures the odd morning moments when he's lucid, fondly shares memories of their life together with the help of evening slide shows, doses herself with painkillers and dispenses nuggets of dry-eyed wisdom. They proceed in good order through Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona, phoning their daughter Cindy and their son Kevin from time to time but ignoring the pleas and threats intended to bring them home. John is content to drive for hours without saying anything or knowing where he is, but Ella is clearly a woman on a mission, and long before their Leisure Seeker reaches Anaheim, you'll know what that mission is. Zadoorian (Second Hand, 2000) asks readers to accept the ending on very much the same terms that Ella accepts her life. A bittersweet fable of the golden years likely to offer consolation to readers who've ever known anyone old, or have plans to get old themselves. Agent: Sally van Haitsma/The Castiglia Agency
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061984518
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/6/2009
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 104,255
  • File size: 552 KB

Meet the Author

Michael Zadoorian is the author of Second Hand and The Lost Tiki Palaces of Detroit: Stories.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 107 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(43)

4 Star

(39)

3 Star

(15)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(4)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 107 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 28, 2009

    Best I've Read In A Long Time

    Everyone knows or has known a couple similar to John and Ella. I am still astounded as to how Michael found Ella's voice. What a wonderful book! I laughed, I cried, but mostly I smiled. I can't stop recommending this book. Thank you Michael.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2010

    Recommended reading for caregivers who need a lift!

    A friend recommended this book afetr I entertained her with comical stories about my adventures as the primary caregiver for my Mom, who suffers from dementia. This quick and easy read was thoroughly engaging and entertaining and reaffirmed my theory to find the joy in whatever time we have with our loved ones who no longer keep step with the rest of the world.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2009

    A great read

    This book was hard to put down. I laughed, I cried, and didn't want it to come to an end. We all can see parts of ourselves in the characters, and only hope to have the love these two share. I will never forget this story.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 27, 2009

    BEAUTIFUL

    I understood this story, as I am a cancer survivor, and have lost 2 loved ones to Dimentia/Alzheimers. This was such a beautiful story, and spot on. Every young person should read this. I hope I go out as gracefully and lovingly as this couple. I will be looking for more from this author!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2013

    %111111111111111111111111111)@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@)9%

    Uhfhdwqeiwuwyywfudjjjjji

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2013

    A really different book, good story, very direct. I don't know m

    A really different book, good story, very direct. I don't know many 80-something women who use foul language, though, and I thought that was the book's one weak point. Zadoorian otherwise channeled an old woman remarkably well, but I think of my 83-year-old mother and her friends...no way would they talk like this.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2013

    Recommended

    As I am the age of the main characters, I could relate to much of
    what they were experiencing. I'm not sure I would have chosen the
    solution she did as I'm not sure I would have been brave enough.
    But for a couple who have been married for so many years and the
    health problems they had, it was a beautiful ending of a loving
    marriage.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2013

    fast, thoughtful

    I really enjoyed the voice of Ella and her trip with her husband.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2012

    So well written really enjoyed the story line gives one alot to ponder.

    This is such a wonderful book,written, i think,for the older generation. The couple had a good, long married life until illness invaded their happy times. First time i read such a down to earth book on a serious subject,but made me laugh at their fun trip! Recommend

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 17, 2012

    Recommend. Great Book Club Discussion or Personal Thought Provoker

    So real. I was right there with them on this trip of their life. I won't forget this book for a very long time. Look forward to having a discussion with friends when they have completed the read.

    If you don't understand how you might feel about illness or old age, if you don't understand how your parent behave, or if you are bewildered about the behavior of your grandparent. Read and understand.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2012

    Ok.

    Some good points in the book but i honestly would not highly recommend.

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  • Posted October 14, 2011

    Suicide

    I cannot get behind double suicide; it ruined the book for me.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 16, 2011

    Very good

    Short book but a good read. Happy, sad, funny.zz

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  • Posted August 10, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Playing with a thought we often prefer to gloss over.

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2011

    Wonderful!! Won't disappoint!

    Makes you really think about parents and grandparents and what they might be thinking. CAUTION!: Swear words. Do not read if you recently lost a loved one.

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  • Posted April 17, 2011

    Bittersweet, emotional story.

    This story was sweet, funny and sad at the same time. I only wish my mother would have had the same terrific idea of kidnapping herself before losing her cancer battle. This story shows what I kept trying to tell her. You have to seize the day while you still can. Sweet story that I will definitely recommend to friends.

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  • Posted February 6, 2011

    Right on

    Having vacationed with my family in our RV as a kid, and watching my mother bravely battling cancer for 8+ years now, I found this bittersweet story very relatable, enjoyable and fun, despite the underlying inevitability.

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  • Posted January 25, 2011

    awesome

    What a wonderful story,it felt like I was traveling right along in the leisure seeker!

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  • Posted December 29, 2010

    very touching

    across the Country, down the well traveled route 66, a love story that touched my soul.

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  • Posted November 8, 2010

    Very Odd and somewhat depressing

    Very predictible, at times entertaining, but also very depressing.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 107 Customer Reviews

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