“Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies” (Atria Books), by Michael Ausiello
Michael Ausiello is a respected television journalist whose wit and candor are well-received by those who love reading behind-the-scenes reports in the entertainment industry.
He is open and honest in his memoir, an account of his husband Kit Cowan’s yearlong battle with cancer. “Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies” chronicles the couple’s instant chemistry, their relatable love story and the unrelenting bravery both men displayed in the darkest of days.
When Cowan is diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, their livelihood comes to a halt. Things may not have been perfect in the partnership, but when you know you have less than a year left to live, priorities change. Ausiello transitions from a hardworking entertainment guru to a full-time caregiver.
Ausiello spares no expense detailing the range of emotions that accompany a cancer diagnosis. From Cowan’s first round of chemotherapy to his last breath, Ausiello paints a vivid picture of shock, grit, denial, acceptance and steadfast love. It is simultaneously poignant and shockingly funny. You’ll cry, you’ll laugh and you’ll cry again.
“Spoiler Alert” is both tender and raw. It almost feels inappropriate to be invited into such a deeply personal chapter of someone’s life. It’s a story about love and loss, joy and heartbreak. And in the midst of personal turmoil, we learn that bravery comes in many forms.