Monday, May 20, 2013

Alice's Review: The Lost Husband

Summary:  Dear Libby,  It occurs to me that you and your two children have been living with your mother for—Dear Lord!—two whole years, and I’m writing to see if you'd like to be rescued.  The letter comes out of the blue, and just in time for Libby Moran, who—after the sudden death of her husband, Danny—went to stay with her hypercritical mother. Now her crazy Aunt Jean has offered Libby an escape: a job and a place to live on her farm in the Texas Hill Country. Before she can talk herself out of it, Libby is packing the minivan, grabbing the kids, and hitting the road.  Life on Aunt Jean’s goat farm is both more wonderful and more mysterious than Libby could have imagined. Beyond the animals and the strenuous work, there is quiet—deep, country quiet. But there is also a shaggy, gruff (though purportedly handsome, under all that hair) farm manager with a tragic home life, a formerly famous feed-store clerk who claims she can contact Danny “on the other side,” and the eccentric aunt Libby never really knew but who turns out to be exactly what she’s been looking for. And despite everything she’s lost, Libby soon realizes how much more she’s found. She hasn’t just traded one kind of crazy for another: She may actually have found the place to bring her little family—and herself—back to life.

 Review:  Libby is a recently widowed mother of two doing everything she can to hold it together when she gets an opportunity so odd she really has no choice but to take it. That opportunity is to move to a Podunk town in Texas and work for her estranged Aunt Jean on her goat farm. Throw in some excellent life lessons, a sexy farmhand and two funny and brave kids, and you have the perfect recipe for a light and fun summer read.

I can’t even being to tell you how much I enjoyed The Lost Husband. The root of it is characters that are likable and realistic. There was a strength in Libby I really respected. She made some tough choices, taking chances for the sake of her children. I loved that she selflessly put their needs first. Truth is I loved all the characters in the novel especially Libby’s Aunt Jean and her daughter Abby. There was enough drama to tug at my heartstrings and enough laugh out loud moments that lighten the load when things got to serious.

This novel was so visual for me. I felt Ms. Center really takes a hold of her reader and transports us to a place where things are simpler, life’s lessons are learned, and love rules the heart. In my mind’s eye, I was there on the farm with Libby.

The one (and only) complaint is that the title of the novel does nothing to convey how lovely The Lost Husband really is. It also says nothing about how this is an adventure of self. Maybe it’s the second chance at true love, maybe it’s the goat farm and cheese making, maybe it’s the loveable and sometimes wacky characters. Whatever it is, The Lost Husband is wonderful. I look forward to reading Ms. Center's other novels.

 Final Take: 5/5



Mary (Bookfan) May 28, 2013 at 8:40 PM  

Yep, one of my few 5 star reads in 2013. Loved it!

Katherine Center October 15, 2013 at 5:41 PM  

Just stumbled across your review! Thank you for all your kind words!!

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