The Truth About Delilah Blue

The Truth About Delilah Blue by Tish Cohen

Kobo recently had a sale on bestsellers and, while meandering the Canadian section hoping for something to pop out at me, I clicked the preview on The Truth About Delilah Blue. Something about the synopsis (likely the “aspiring-artist outsider” bit) appealed to me. It’s not necessarily the type of read I usually reach for, but I’ve been having a rough year for being able to concentrate on novels, so something modern and potentially light seemed a perfect distraction.

I think the immediate pull for me, the aspect that drew me to click “buy” after reading aforementioned preview, was the main character of Delilah. She’s fascinating, nuanced, and flawed. She’s so oblivious to the obvious bullshit surrounding the circumstances of her move to America. She’s so blocked creatively, so uncomfortable with her own art, that she destroys her work as soon as it’s made. Yet she’s so aware of who she is as a person, even if she doesn’t always realize it, and so comfortable with her own body that she doesn’t mind becoming nude for dozens of strangers.

Well. Not too much, anyway.

The handling of her father’s Alzheimer’s also deserves mention. Clearly Tish Cohen did her homework. I’m certain everyone has been close to someone who’s suffered from dementia — I’m no exception — and a lot of the situations in the novel feel very familiar. They did take me out of Delilah’s storyline, the character I was most interested in, but I understand why they were integral to the storytelling.

Overall, the book is a fairly quick read and an interesting contemporary story. In a way, it felt like White Oleander, one of my favourite novels of all time, albeit far shorter and with simpler writing (not necessarily a bad thing). I recommend giving it a chance. You might just find Delilah Blue as captivating as I did.

This book was purchased by myself via