By Jo Barney
Genre: Women’s Lit
Edith Finlay has lived the unfinished life of any number of women in their sixties. The question she and they ask isn't, "Is this all there is?" It's more like, "Where did drop the reins?" In fact when Edith wakes to find her husband of forty-seven years lying dead next to her, her first concern is the Christmas strata she's to bake in an hour or so.
Art's death offers Edith one last chance at taking control of her life. Scraps in Art's pockets send her on a search for answers to his secrets. She discovers a lover, maybe, a prostitute, sometimes, and her son, a man of secrets also. She also finds herself, the real Edith.
Oh, this book is so good. I love a solid fiction story revolving around family drama and I am not referring to Jerry Springer drama. I am talking about the secrets that are kept in order to keep the family unit together, but eventually cause life to crumble and rear its ugly head. It's up to the characters to decide if these secrets will make or break them.
I love the main character, Edith. She is an older woman in her sixties who suddenly loses her husband to a massive heart attack and starts to get wise to his other life. As she begins an investigation, things aren't as they appear and soon discovers what has been brewing for 18 years underneath her nose.
I applaud author Jo Barney for brilliantly writing Edith's emotions ... the pent-up feelings for husband, the loss of self and what-ifs? A must read for women-lit readers!
After graduating from Willamette University, Jo spent the most of next thirty years teaching, counseling, mothering, wifing and of course, writing.
Her writing first appeared in small literary magazines and professional publications. Since retirement, she has had time to write four novels and two screenplays. The first book used her teaching life as inspiration and served as a way to leave a profession she loved. The second story focused on her then-prodigal son, the hockey player. She’s quite sure he is relieved that it has not yet been published. Her third novel, Uprush, is an intimate, almost true, story of four middle-aged women lot like her own long-time friends. Graffiti Grandma examines the life of an elderly woman and the underworld of the homeless. Her next book, tells of Edith who wakes up one morning to find she is a widow.
Her stories and essays, as well as the novels, reflect her observations of women’s lives and the people who inhabit them: the children, husbands, parents, friends, strangers who happen by and change everything.
Follow Jo Barney:
Website Link: www.jobarneywrites.com
Blog site: www.breakoutnovelarace.blogspot.com