Bob & Adele Levin share their inspirational collaborative work, I Will Keep You Alive: A Cardiovascular Romance.
Bob Levin had done everything right. He ate right. He exercised. He did not smoke or drink. But in the first nine months of 2011, the 68-year-old lawyer and author suffered two heart attacks, seven cardiac stents implanted over three separate procedures, two "code" calls for emergency resuscitation, three days in a medically induced coma, and had his heart literally in someone else's hands during a complicated open-heart surgery. In 2013, he received an internal cardioverter-defibrilator and then survived an absurd but seemingly near-death out-of-body experience. These unexpected, unwelcome traumas -- calling into question the nature of identity and existence itself -- also transformed Adele, his wife of 40-years, a psychotherapist and short story writer (/Chiron Review, The Sun, Yellow Silk/). Best friends, closest confidants and "first readers," their relationship was tested and transformed as she overcame her own challenges to find the strength to be his primary caregiver. Together, they navigated the fears and doubts which fell upon them from the heavens like peregrines on doves. This story of healing, intimacy and evolution is told from Bob's and Adele's alternating points of view, with events filtered through and reinforced by each writer's unique voice and powers of observation. A life-affirming tale in "he said; she said" construction, the Levins' accounts are enhanced by the candid insights of "Dr. Fleur," Bob's treating cardiologist, who witnessed their emotional growth as individuals and as a couple.