THE SWEET SPOT
From the cover and title you expect a sweet contemporary western, but this is a sensitive, honest look at a family destroyed by loss, a family that must try to rise from the ashes of their old life and see what they are now — different, certainly, but pieces or a unit? Drake’s characters are so real, and so like us, that you will look at your own life and count your treasures.
Charla Rae was a ranch wife in her old life, caring for house, husband and child. Now she is left with only the broken pieces of her life — divorced, her son dead in a tragic accident, her father falling into an Alzheimer’s twilight, the ranch failing because she can’t keep it alive without her ex-husband. She has retreated into a cocoon of grief and Valium just to get through the day. Jimmy Denny was in his prime — a bull rider married to his high school sweetheart, building a champion herd with his father-in-law — until the day it all fell apart. His son was gone, Charla froze him out and his home was no more. Who is he now, and is it even possible to put the pieces of his life back in any kind of shape? And is Charla still the only woman for him? (FOREVER, Jun., 336 pp., $6.00)