20. Life Lines by Jill Ireland (1989)
Length: 358 pages
Started: 16 March 2010
Finished: 20 March 2010
Where did it come from? From a Library Book Sale
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 1 March 2009
Why do I have it? I like non-fiction and was always curious about Jill Ireland’s life.
In Jill Ireland’s first book, Life Wish she chronicled her inspirational struggle to survive cancer. In Life Lines – the sequel – Jill Ireland recounts the multiple tragedies that threatened at times to overwhelm her. With her first husband, Scottish actor and musician David McCallum, Jill had three sons, one of whom, Jason, was adopted at birth from a teenaged mother. Jason’s differences were noticed very early, especially when the McCallum children joined the Bronson household in 1968, when Jill Ireland married her second husband, Charles Bronson.
But in that sprawling Bel Air mansion, buzzing with activity, Jason’s addictive personality was initially obscured from those who loved him. The painful journey of mother and son through his recovery from and subsequent relapses into alcoholism and drug dependency reached a turning point with the intervention of Jason’s birth mother and Jill’s acknowledgement of Jason’s problems. Concurrently, tragedy strikes in the form of the steady physical deterioration of Jill’s father, rendered speechless by a stroke.
Unfortunately, Jason died from an accidental drug overdose in 1989, six months before his mother passed away from breast cancer. I definitely respect Jill Ireland for the struggles she went through in her life, but I do have to say that Life Lines, while extremely enjoyable, was slightly annoying because it occasionally went back and forth throughout Jason’s life – calling him ‘Kier’ before birth, and ‘Jason’ during his life with her. ‘Kier’ might have been Jason’s name before he was adopted, but it was just slightly confusing for me to read as she occasionally wrote passages where ‘Baby Kier’s cries for his mother’s love struggled to be heard through Jason’s constant drug abuse.’ Overall, I give Life Lines by Jill Ireland an A!
Till we Meet Again, Glow Brightly as Moonlight