Shades of Grace

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9780061092824: Shades of Grace

Grace Dorian is a national treasure. She is "The Confidante," a seasoned advice columnist whose practicality and good sense have guided two generations of American women in her syndicated daily column. Grace's daughter, Francine, and granddaughter, Sophie, manage the vast Dorian empire, overseeing Grace's speaking engagements, interviews and demanding publicity schedules. But suddenly Grace does not seem right. Her razor-sharp mind is occasionally forgetful; her columns wander. Grace finds herself vehemently denying -- but is clearly suffering from -- the early symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.

In a frantic struggle to regain control within the family and the business, Francine must step forth and fill her legendary mother's shoes. She must cope with Grace's mortal fear and inability to continue as "The Confidante," as well as her own new role of writing her mother's column, answering her fan mail and preserving the secret of her mother's health until Grace comes to terms with it herself. But Francine must also struggle to live her own life.

Long divorced and existing in her mother's shadow, Francine battles her new role in the face of affections from Grace's doctor, a rugged and kind man whose interest leaves Francine torn between devotion to her mother and commitment to rebuilding her own life. And Francine must think of her daughter, Sophie, who at 23 needs Francine's guidance as much as, and perhaps more than, "The Confidante's" public does. Sophie watches the role reversal in her family and attempts to understand the drastic changes in a grandmother whom she has always loved but found overbearing.

Shades of Grace is the most touching of family stories, in which love, family dysfunction and romance are woven together with brave and memorable characters to create a powerful narrative -- a talent that has earned Barbara Delinsky critical acclaim and an ever-widening readership.

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About the Author:

Barbara Delinsky, a lifelong New Englander, was a sociologist and photographer before she began to write. There are more than 30 million copies of her books in print.

From Publishers Weekly:

A tale of three women whose lives are affected by a tragic disease, Delinsky's (For My Daughters) latest novel adroitly pulls the heartstrings while exploring generational responsibilities. After years of giving advice in her nationally syndicated newspaper column, "The Confidante," domineering Grace Dorian, 61, has a problem she can't share even with her only child and dependable assistant, Francine. Some months after being diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, Grace grudgingly permits handsome Dr. Davis Marcoux to tell her daughter the truth. But she still clings to one secret: the true identity of Francine's father. Francine is a divorced mother of Sophie, a 23-year-old diabetic, who also works on the column and has resented her grandmother as a rival for her mother's love. For her part, Francine is determined to protect "The Confidante" and keep the public?including an aggressive reporter, Robin Duffy?from discovering her mother's condition. She begins to ghostwrite the columns while also embarking on a romance with Dr. Marcoux. To help her mother write her promised autobiography, Francine hires Robin, whose own mother was one of Grace's ardent admirers. Delinsky creates only lukewarm suspense in Francine's and Robin's respective quests to unearth Grace's secret past, but readers will sympathize with the characters as each comes to grips with a life-changing situation.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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