||Lorena B Books
||April 13, 2011
Lost in the world of suburbia, Marissa Lyons learns her high school nemesis had just bought the house across from her. Will this open all the insecurities from high school? But when Marissa sees Beatrice she finds something she never expected.
Lorena B Books
In Vista Heights, the women of the neighborhood have started to look like their homes, varying shades of beige.
Lost in this world of suburbia, Marissa Lyons learns her high school nemesis is moving in right across the street. Knowing her life as a forty something single mother is not going impress Beatrice she decides to face it head on. Arriving on Beatrice's doorstep with warm cupcakes she is surprised to find something she never expected.
How will Marissa and the rest of the women of San Martino deal with someone like Beatrice Munson, whose defining moment in life was to get a boob job or go on a trip to Egypt.
This is a story about friendship, love, larning to look at things differently, drag queens, chocolate cupcakes, and great party planning. Step into the world of Vista Heights where you might not only recognize some of the women, you might be one.
"You wrote a book?"
"Yes, two books. Well, three actually. She looked up, a shy smile on her face.
"What were they about?" I was awestruck to know that an author was standing in front of me. I had a certain esteem for writers and anyone able to not only complete a manuscript but then publish it was grounds for hero worship.
Beatrice moved towards a box setting the cupcake on the counter. She opened the lid and peered inside. A thick black book emerged and I could see from across the room that her picture was on the back cover. She dusted the front off, clasped it with two hands, and tossed it to me. I caught it, turned it right side up, and saw a picture of the Nile River. The title 'Floating From Here to There' was written in gold script below the photo.
"Is this about you floating down the Nile River?" Hating the obviousness of my question.
"More or less. There are a few stories about Egypt and North Africa in there too." Beatrice picked up her cupcake and tooka a bite. Her eyes rolled upward as she let the flavors of the warm cake awaken her taste buds. "Oh my gosh. This is so good."
It was wonderful to watch a person appreciate a cupcake. I realized I spent too much time with my friends talking about what they had ingested each day, rationalizing why they had chewed each piece of food, and then apologizing for their weakness at the need to actually consume food at all.
It was refreshing to see Beatrice Munson simply enjoying the texture and bliss that my mom's chocolate cupcakes created. Beatrice was quiet as she felt the cupcake's creaminess on her tongue. I could hear the quiet murmur as she swalled and appreciate the bliss her mouth was experiencing.
Lynnette Phillips, An Avid Reader Blog
Lorena Bathey has woven a charming and sparkling narrative of reconnecting, friendship, love and compassion. This fun read almost glides past before you know it as the characters are surprised by a long overdue reawakening.
Charlie Courtland, Bitsy Bling Blog
I loved the premise of this book and the idea behind the development. I believe most SAHM and those living in modern cul de sac developments will appreciate the struggles of these women. Some might not agree, but the beige cage is a modern day anthropology study waiting to happen.
"We all went silent in understanding. Even as adult women we knew that we had to get permission from our husbands to do something as drastic as start a business and create an empire. There would be an unsaid commitment to our partner that we would not let things slide around the house. The kids would still have to be earning great GPAs, the dinners would still be ready on time, the dog would be walked, and by all means we could not ever become more successful in the business world than they were. It was unwritten but implied and it was the caveat to the world that we found ourselves living in."
I was particularly impressed with this passage for its emotional exposure to the underlying problem and for providing a peek at the true wizard behind the curtain. Beatrice Munson moves into the neighborhood and shakes it up by really not doing very much, but being herself. As I mentioned, a great concept and important contemporary ideology to explore.
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