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drey's library

reviews, interviews, and giveaways from an eclectic reader...

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In the Courts of the Sun
Brian D'Amato
Gideon Smith and the Mechanical Girl
David Barnett
The Bone Palace
A Rural Affair - Catherine Alliott Poppy Shilling never thought life would come to this – raising her two children and taking care of the household on her own, while her husband Phil is always off working or cycling or handing out his passive-aggressive lists of things for her to do. She starts wondering more and more if she married the right guy, and whether she’s brave enough to walk way (with the children of course, as Phil wouldn’t have the faintest clue what to do with them). Then one day Phil’s killed by a freak accident while out cycling. (And by “freak” I mean “OMG, Catherine Alliott did not just make that the cause-of-death!”)Going through the motions after Phil’s death, Poppy is surprised by her lack of emotion at her loss – until she meets the “other woman” and is stunned by the devastation of his betrayal and the strength of her reaction to it.A Rural Affair tells the story of a woman whose life is turned upside down not just by the death of her spouse but by his infidelity as well, and her efforts to recover and move on. Using humor to diffuse difficult topics, Alliott takes us through Poppy’s depression, rage at the other woman’s bold attempt to claim “her” portion of Phil’s will, anxiety and resignation at being set up by her friends and neighbors, and eventual realization that she has a life to live, still.Poppy’s children are darling, her best friends are awesome and endearing, and the setting is perfect for this story.drey’s rating: Pick it up!