“A stylish witty collection with plenty of heart.” – Kirkus
The title novella centers on man-crazy Natalie, a PR whiz, and her former grad school roommate Joey, an economist. In league with them are Juliet the landscape designer, Nan the housewife cum volunteer and Dana the radio journalist. Five women couldn’t be more different, but these Fifty/Sixty Somethings have a morale-boosting credo: friends support friends. And support is very much needed as crises come and go: seductive gurus, pushy kids, spousal abuse, sexuality, coronaries, auto accidents, ageism—and men. For instance:
“The bare shoulders do get kissed, and those tiny silk straps are soooo in the way. Somehow we reach his bedroom, where the clothes come off. Oh! Oh! Oh! I’m with a man who knows how to make love, which turns me into a gloriously amorous creature. Oh yes, I think! Oh yes! Yes! This was worth waiting for. But there’s waiting and waiting. Eventually I am getting impatient, frustrated, annoyed, because he is not ready, not ready, not ready, and I am.”
“Dangling Woman” introduces Penelope Strong whose life is in suspense while José Suarez, the District Attorney, prepares to charge her for the murder of her husband. Penelope’s case isn’t helped by a daughter who’s out to punish her, too, or by José’s hidden motives. He’s running for Congress. Will a show trial help him or will a Suarez family secret destroy him first? This is a story of jealousy, ambition, intertwined families and hard-fought politics in the small world of Northern New Mexico, and it begins with a freak accident on a ski lift.
The short story “Senior Moments” suggests that popular culture is way off base when it comes to memory lapses among the not so young. It reframes the notorious “senior moment” in a positive, even joyous way. This liberating inspiration comes to the narrator when she’s asked to care for a six year old grandson while her daughter-in-law attends a conference in a distant city.