Book Review ~ "Wish You Were Here" by Amy Welborn

 I recently read a book just out, Wish You Were Here by Amy Welborn Dubruiel.  When I read the synopsis of the book I knew it would be a good book for me for two reasons:

1) Michael Dubruiel
The main focus of the book is about someone I sort of knew ... Amy's deceased husband, Mike Dubruiel.  For a time, Mike was an Acquisitions Editor at Our Sunday Visitor Publishing Company and was the one who liked the proposal for my first book, Saints of the Bible.  He was responsible for getting it published.  Sadly, he moved to Alabama and passed away before the book ever made it to print.

2) Italy
A few months after Mike's death, his wife and children escaped to Italy for a few weeks.  I can't resist a memoir involving Italy.  My husband was stationed in Italy for three years in the mid-90s and I consider those to have been some very profound years of my life.  Reading about other people's journeys to Italy helps to bring back some rich memories.

About Wish You Were Here
This book really bares Amy's grieving soul.  Her husband's death was sudden - a heart attack - and the family had been just embarking on a new chapter in life ... a move to a new city and a new job.  Mike's sudden death caused the Dubruiel family's world to turn upside down.  A rather impulsive trip to Italy a few months later inspired Amy to ruminate, ponder, pray about, and face more directly Mike's death.  Though a complete healing will never happen for Amy, the trip and writing about it seem to have offered her heart a bit of hopeful insight.

I'm the curious type ... I wanted to know more.  I wanted a few more narratives of when they were dating, how they met, her first marriage, his most-likely difficult decision to leave the priesthood, etc.  But, I suppose the trial of Mike's death was more than enough for her heart to bear for one book.  Maybe another book, another time.

I have a friend who lost her husband last summer, leaving her with two teenage boys to finish raising on her own.  I asked her at a football game this past fall how she was doing and with mist in her eyes, she replied, "However difficult you might think it is to lose a husband, it is truly 1,000 times worse than that."  I need to share Amy's book with my friend, Jo.

A Nice Guy - Mike Dubruiel

~  ~  ~

Flying to "Bella Napoli" (Naples), Italy
to Begin Our Three-Year "Viaggio in Italia"
July 31, 1994