“You Me Everything,” a novel about a single mom whose mother is diagnosed with Huntington’s disease, is helping to raise awareness of the condition. The story is also drawing attention to the struggles of patients and their loved ones.
In writing the novel, British author Catherine Isaac sought the help of the Huntington’s Disease Association (HDA) in the U.K. to accurately depict the challenges of living with Huntington’s.
Catherine Isaac is the pen name of Jane Costello, a best-selling writer of romantic comedies. “After a decade of writing as Jane Costello, my next book, You Me Everything, will be released under the pseudonym Catherine Isaac,” the author said on her website janecostello.com. “Those who’ve been reading my work for the last ten years (thank you if you’re one of them) might be wondering why.
“Quite simply, while You Me Everything has some of the ingredients my readers have come to expect, it stands out from my previous books in a number of ways. Writing it felt special, different, but in all the right ways. And I really hope that reading it will too.”
The story, which is set in the French countryside, observes the life-changing chain of events that encourage Jess to take chances, to forgive, and be bold enough to live her life, for her and for 10-year-old son William.
The novel was inspired by Isaac’s close friend, who has a family member recently diagnosed with Huntington’s.
HDA helped Isaac provide an accurate account of the symptoms and impact the disease can have on families.
“Huntington’s is a very misunderstood illness and there is very little awareness about the disease. You, Me, Everything raises many of the dilemmas faced by families affected by Huntington’s,” Cath Stanley, chief executive at HDA, said. “The importance of accurate information even in fiction cannot be underestimated, so having the opportunity to work with Catherine on this aspect of the book was invaluable.”