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Publisher’s Weekly Review of “Island Girl”

Lynda Simmons, Berkley, $15 trade paper (448p) ISBN 978-0-425-23724-3
Canadian novelist Simmons (Getting Rid of Rosie) returns with a real weeper. At 55, Ward Island hair stylist Ruby Donaldson has enjoyed a bohemian life full of romance and adventure. But early-onset Alzheimer’s, or “Big Al” as she calls it, is a tough diagnosis to accept. She worries about what will happen to Grace, her 20-something daughter who has recently moved back home, seeing the island as a safe refuge after a personal tragedy. Ruby’s older daughter, Liz, is an alcoholic who left home for Toronto’s more hectic offerings, her exact whereabouts unknown. But Ruby, who has no intention of going through Alzheimer’s full debilitation, needs to find Liz and reconnect; she wants someone to look after Grace when she’s gone. Simmons exhibits an exquisitely deft understanding of the extraordinary difficulties that unite a family, and her portrayals of the three women, told in alternating first-person chapters, enable satisfying connections with each. Ruby’s tender ex, a father figure to both Liz and Grace, and his grumpy goth 12-year-old daughter, are also well-drawn, helping alleviate the novel’s compounding sorrow. (Dec.)

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This entry was posted on Thursday, October 21st, 2010 at 7:34 am and is filed under Clients, Friends and Colleagues, Industry News, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

2 Responses to “Publisher’s Weekly Review of “Island Girl””

  1. Stephanie Potter Says:

    This sounds like a good read! We had a book sale at the library about a month ago, and I’ve been dragging home unsold books (lots) every day. An “awful” lot of middle-age-wife-dealing-with-husband-leaving-for-a-younger-woman. _Island Girl_ sounds like it is full of all the rest of life that women are!

  2. Sherri Rosen Says:

    Stephanie, the book has so much depth to it. It poses real life situations and she is a wonderful writer.

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