Picking Up the Pieces

Sheepshanks, Mary

Published by St. Martin's Paperbacks
ISBN 10: 0312970374 / ISBN 13: 9780312970376
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0312970374 In NEW, unread book in excellent condition. No nicks or tears on dust jacket that has clean, straight edges. MoNeY Back Guarantee!. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: Kate is in her fifties, recently widowed, and coping with the difficulties--and occasional pleasures--of flying solo. But when her daughter Joanna's husband walks out, and Joanna instantly assumes that Kate will step into the supporting Granny role while she goes career and man-hunting, Kate realizes it is time to step outside her family's preconceived expectations--with devastating results. What follows is a delightful story of the relationships and unspoken power struggles between four generations of women.

Review: Fiftysomething Kate Rendlesham has spent the majority of her life keeping up appearances for the sake of her family and her powerful, if philandering, husband. After his death, however, she feels herself stretching toward a new identity that has nothing to do with being the wife of the late Oliver Rendlesham. Armed with her embroidery skills and some newfound courage, Kate embarks on a new life.

Though convincing herself of her abilities is her first trial, nothing is as difficult as overcoming the skepticism of her peers and the misplaced resentment of her daughter, Joanna, and her granddaughter, Harriet. Having relied on Kate as an ever-available babysitter, Joanna sees her mother's actions as an ill-fated and selfish mid-life crisis. And while Harriet understands Kate's motivations, she aches for a nurturing intimacy that the stiff Joanna cannot provide. Struggling to defend her new independence, Kate finds inspiration in an enchanted observatory and its handsome owner, Jack Morley.

Posing as the groundskeeper, Jack invites Kate to live in the observatory in exchange for her managing its renovation. Kate discovers in Jack someone "with whom it was so easy to communicate that she felt as if they shared their thoughts before they had even put them into words." But the intensity of their feelings makes her discovery of Jack's secret past deeply painful. Grappling with her mixed emotions, Kate offers little support to Joanna as her fragile marriage Crumbles and to Harriet before she drifts into angry estrangement. As Kate, Joanna, and Harriet each face broken relationships, they must learn to pick up the pieces and create a new future.

From the navel-piercing teenager to the exotic grande dame, Mary Sheepshanks shows a keen eye for human behavior in Picking Up the Pieces. Rich description and dialogue make the rural English setting feel familiar, even for those of us who don't own cottage farms or drink afternoon tea. Readers of all ages will be able to empathize with these three women as we follow them through life transformations, and the wit and humanity of this multi-generational story will endure through multiple readings. --Nancy R.E. O'Brien

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Title: Picking Up the Pieces
Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks
Binding: MASS MARKET PAPERBACK
Book Condition: New

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Mary Sheepshanks
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Book Description St. Martin's Press. Mass Market Paperback. Condition: Good. A copy that has been read, but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact. The spine may show signs of wear. Pages can include limited notes and highlighting, and the copy can include previous owner inscriptions. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G0312970374I3N00

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