Cancer Vixen

October 9, 2006 | Trades


Cancer Vixen
Marisa Acocella Marchetto
Knopf Canada
$29.95 (Hardcover)
**** (out of five)

It’s the most gripping episode of Sex And The City that never was.
Amid the shoe shopping, the obsessing about men and the excessive downing of trendy drinks in a never-ending quest to find the “it” things in New York City, doctors find a malignant tumour in Carrie Bradshaw’s left breast.
That’s essentially the premise of Marisa Acocella Marchetto’s autobiographical comic Cancer Vixen, with the minor addendums that she is an illustrator instead of a sex columnist and she seems a hell of a lot brighter than Ms. Bradshaw (though the shoe fetish is eerily similar).
With painstaking detail and a raw emotional tone, Marisa takes readers on a roller-coaster ride with her from the time of her diagnosis (just three weeks before her wedding) to surgery, chemotherapy and, thankfully, recovery.
Blended into this story are an insightful remembrance of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 and a sweet love story involving Marisa and her now-husband Silvano.
Cancer Vixen, released in conjunction with Breast Cancer Awareness Month, is a harsh dose of reality, but told with a mix of humour, insight, love and hope that is hard to overlook.

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