SOMEONE WAS HERE: Profiles in the AIDS Epidemic by George Whitmore

SOMEONE WAS HERE: Profiles in the AIDS Epidemic

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Three poignant AIDS case-histories by novelist Whitmore (Nebraska and The Confessions of Danny Slocum), who expanded a New York Times Magazine article to create this volume and who reveals in the epilogue that he, too, has been diagnosed with AIDS. Whitmore's first profile is of Jim Sharp, a 32-year-old ad exec who is consumed with denial but who is assisted by Ed Dunn of the Gay Men's Health Crisis--a man who has lost his own lover to the disease and who dies while helping Sharp. The second profile concerns Mike, a young good-for-nothing, but it is more about his mother, Nellie, and ""a mother's love for a son who was lost, then found, then lost again forever."" Nellie defies the prejudices of family and community in Colorado to take care of her terminally ill son, who had turned his back on her for over five years. Finally, there is a profile of two selfless ladies at the Bronx's Lincoln Hospital--Nurse Carmen Baez (who tells AIDS patients when they leave, ""I hope I never see you again,"" although she invariably does) and Sister Fran Whelan, who ""doesn't talk to patients about God in dogmatic terms. Her message is a simple one about providence and accompaniment: ""You are not alone. . .I will not leave you."" A moving, at times melodramatic, and very personal book that universalizes the AIDS experience in a way that brings it home to all.

Pub Date: April 26th, 1988
Publisher: New American Library