About the Book:
Middle-aged, Maggie Abernathy just wants to recuperate from cancer during the solitude of summer vacation after a tiresome year of teaching second grade. Maggie's plans are foiled when precocious seven-year-old Chloe McIntyre moves in next door with her dad, John. Maggie's life changes in a way she could never imagine when the pesky new neighbors steal her heart. With Maggie's grown son away, her ex-husband in the shadows, her meddling mother's unannounced visits, and Chloe McIntyre on her heels, somehow Maggie's empty house becomes home again.
The word that comes to mind when I read this book is "busy". I've also read that one way to tell and introvert from an extrovert is to consider the answer to this question: You've had one of "those" days at work; if it could go wrong, it did go wrong. You feel like you were beaten up one side and down the other. What do you wan to do now?
- Go home, take a bubble bath and crawl into bed with a good book or good movie; or
- Head for happy hour with a couple of friends, or the whole gang
Introverts recharge and recover by themselves; extroverts seek the crowd. Maybe Maggie is an extrovert because her life that summer woud have driven me to tears.
First of all there is Chloe, the seven year old from next door who decides that Maggie is the one who will pay attention to her that summer I love kids but every time you turn around, Chloe is there. As noted above Maggie is being treated for breast cancer and seems to want some privacy and space but besides Chloe, Maggie's mother is always around and guesses her secret. Her ex-husband, who has decided to come out as gay, keeps popping up. I kept wanting to go into that house and shoo everyone away. On the other hand, Maggie is a teacher and probably more of an extrovert than I am; maybe deep down she prefered the crowd.
Basically, this is the story of Maggie coming to terms with her divorce and seeing that things weren't so perfect when examined in the rear-viw mirror. She starts carving out a new life for herself--she spent years as a wife and mother and now she is divorced with a son who livs across the country. Her new start is symbolized by redecorating her house and by starting new relationships, not only with Chloe and her father but also her friendship with a fellow breast cancer survior.
I spend far too much time reading romance novels and most of them are about women far younger than me. The book never says how old Maggie is, but it mentions that he had fertility issues so that we assume she wasn't terribly young when her son was born, and he is now an adult and out of the house. Maggie is going through hot flashes; I know the medications for breast cancer can put you into menopause, but the book never mentions that. In short, I suspect Maggie is in her early fifties and as someone who is in that demographic, I appreciate having books about women like me available.
For those who care, there are no sex scenes and no implication that they occurred off camera.
I'd like to thank the publisher for making a review copy available via NetGalley. Grade: B