The Love Story of Missy Carmichael by Beth Morrey.
There are a lot of books with seniors as the main characters - finding their way, robbing banks, starting revolts at the care home and more. I wonder if there's a genre tag for these?
No revolts or robberies in this one. Just a seventy nine year old, lonely ex-librarian named Missy Carmichael. Her husband is gone, she's estranged from her daughter and her son and grandchild live in Australia. (She's in England) She's lonely, but avoids people and spends her time waiting. For what, she's not sure.
And then something does happen - a dog named Bob, two eclectic women and a small boy invade her life, her home.....and her heart.
The publisher used this phrase to describe the book. And I think it's perfect....."a life-affirming, deeply moving “coming-of-old” story, a celebration of how ordinary days are made extraordinary through friendship, family, and the power of forgiving yourself–at any age."
Morrey does a wonderful job creating her characters. Missy is not a warm and cuddly person in the beginning. But as her life is remembered, I started to understand her pain. And as she starts to venture out into life again I was so happy for her and mentally kept urging her forward. Angela is bigger than life and I loved her 'pushiness'. Her son Otis gives Missy a chance to play and hug a small person again. And Sylvie - her enthusiasm for everything and everyone is infectious.
The plot grabbed me by the heartstrings and didn't let go. Every so often you need a pick me up tale. And The Love Story of Missy Carmichael is just right. See for yourself - read an excerpt of The Love Story of Missy Carmichael.
Kudos to Beth Morrey - this was a fantastic debut novel.