“Note to self: Adjust paradigm.” - Kim Goldberg, Undetectable

In my usual, open-minded way, I judged Kim Goldberg’s book, Undetectable, by its cover. Actually, I formed my opinion on even less than that. Kim has a kind, supportive presence on the HEP Forums, and when I heard that she wrote a book, I figured it would be like some of the other self-published hep C diaries I have read over the years. Kim’s posts on the Hep Forums were always pleasant, and well-written, but didn’t reflect the fact that she was a poet. In short, I figured I’d be politely skimming a book about someone’s hep C treatment experience that might be interesting to them, but not necessarily to anyone else.

I was wrong. Kim’s words apprehended me at the dedication and never let up. And now I have the impossible task of trying to write a review of a book that is lovelier than any words I know how to use. I will do my best.

On the back cover, Undetectable is described as “a lyrical journey through illness, wellness, Hepatitis C and virus as a metaphor.” Although that is all true, Undetectable is much more. Kim writes in a classic style about journey and healing. Her journey is everyone’s journey; her healing could be applied to any type of healing. Hepatitis C may be the impetus for the book, but this book is about being human.

Kim uses poetry, nature, history, social relevance, and humor to enrich her solid storytelling. Her ability to evoke beauty and emotion are so astounding, that at times I put the book down and wept. There were moments I needed to just pause and relish the gratitude I felt to have this book and these words in my possession. How lucky I am to live in a world that has Kim Goldberg in it.

Undetectable is published by Pig Squash Press, is 159 pages, and sells for $19.00. Click here to order. If you are at all hesitant to spend $19 on a book, most of us probably spend more on things that will bring much less pleasure; Undetectable will bring endless pleasure. This book was so precious to me, I ordered another one of Kim’s books, Red Zone. This time, I won’t judge it by its cover.