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Threatened with grief counseling, Olivia accepts a temporary position at the local Meals on Wheels, where she stumbles upon some unfinished business from her mother's past-and a dark family secret. Startling announcements from two siblings also challenge the family's status quo. The last thing she needs is a deepening romantic interest in a close but platonic (she thought) friend.
Number of Pages: 288
Publication Date: 2010
|Dimensions: 8.00 X 5.25 (inches)|
Availability: In Stock
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Threatened with grief counseling, Olivia accepts a temporary position at the local Meals on Wheels, where she stumbles upon some unfinished business from her mother’s past—and a dark family secret. Startling announcements from two siblings also challenge the family’s status quo. The last thing she needs is a deepening romantic interest in a close but platonic (she thought) friend.
But while Olivia’s mother is gone, her memory and spirit continue to engage Olivia, who finds herself daring to speak when she would never have spoken before. Told with humor and compassion, Starting from Scratch explores the shifting of family dynamics in the wake of shattering loss and the healing power of cooking.
--Susan Rebecca White, author of A Soft Place to Land
“Take one part Jane Hamilton, one part Julie Powell, season liberally with originality, and you have Starting from Scratch, the tender, humorous debut. Blowing away preconceptions about contemporary Midwesterners, this novel will be of particular interest to anyone who's clashed with a sibling, mourned the passing of a parent or wondered, even in young adulthood, what they're going to do when they grow up.”
--Sally Koslow, author of Little Pink Slips and With Friends like These.
debhgrtyPlymouth MAAge: Over 65Gender: Female4 Stars Out Of 5Starting from Scratch Equals Coping With GriefMarch 19, 2015debhgrtyPlymouth MAAge: Over 65Gender: FemaleDebs Dozen: Olivia and her family, plus friendsconsumed by grief, consoled by cooking.
Olivia Tschetter has just successfully defended her doctoral dissertation when she learns her mother, Vivian, has died. Vivian was the only one who knew that Olivia was going to do her defense, and now she cant tell her mother that she succeeded.
At home, not talking about her studies, but cooking up a stormOlivia tries to cope with her grief. Her family suggests counseling to get her out of the house, so instead Olivia takes her sister Annies place at the local Meals on Wheels and becomes a part-time volunteer. Along the way, while delivering meals, she meets an old friend of Vivians. And along the way we get to know the rest of the family as well as the family secrets.
Susan Gilbert-Collins writes in a very erudite fashion as she leads us through Olivias story. She takes us inside Olivias mindwe read her thoughts as shes thinking themalmost in stream-of-consciousness style. Olivia, obviously well-educated (shes a Ph.D. after all even if her family doesnt know), also loves cooking. Were treated to some delicious recipes as Olivia works her way through her grief.
You will find Olivias story compelling. I enjoyed reading about the foibles of the people at Meals on Wheels and their clients. I could understand her thoughts and reluctance to deal with Vivians death. When my mom died, I had to change her room out immediatelyto keep busy so I could survive my grief at her loss. Olivia finds being busy a solution tookeeping occupied with Meals on Wheels and with cooking.
Being inside a characters head so deeply makes for a challenging, but rewarding, read. Four stars.
Susan Gilbert-Collins gave me a copy of Starting From Scratch in exchange for my candid review.