"The funny thing about rock bottom is there's stuff underneath it. You think, This is it: I'm at the bottom now. It's all uphill from here! Then you discover the escalator goes down one more floor to another level of bargain basement junk."
In an age in which women are expected to be high achievers, thirty-six-year-old Sophie Stanton desperately wants to be a good widow--a graceful, composed, Jackie Kennedy kind of widow. Alas, Sophie is more of a Jack Daniels kind. Self-medicating with cartons of ice cream for breakfast, breaking down in the produce section at the supermarket, showing up to work in her bathrobe and bunny slippers--soon she's not only lost her husband, but her job, her house, and her waistline.
Desperate to reinvent her life, Sophie moves to Ashland, Oregon. But instead of the way women starting over are depicted in the movies--with heroines instantly being swept off their feet by Sam Shepard kinds of guys--Sophie finds herself in the middle of Lucy-and-Ethel madcap adventures with a darkly comic edge involving a thirteen-year-old with a fascination with fire and an alarmingly handsome actor who inspires a range of feelings she can't cope with--yet.
Filled with laugh-out-loud humor, struggles, triumphs, and plenty of midnight trips to the fridge, Good Grief is a funny, wise, and heartbreakingly poignant novel from one of fiction's freshest and most exciting new voices.
An enjoyable read, even though it did seem a little incredible that someone could go from the bottomless despair of grief to the heights of competence, and even happiness, in the timescale of the book (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).
Throughout this heartbreaking, gorgeous look at loss, Winston imbues her heroine and her narrative with the kind of grace, bitter humor and rapier-sharp realness that will dig deep into a reader's heart and refuse to let go.
Library Journal - Kellie Gillespie
..... this first novel is a rare treat. Sophie is self-deprecating, smart-alecky, insecure, and so lost in grief and despair that we become instantly involved in her situation. Her new life seems to bring more challenges, but she learns to face them with determination, humor, and the hope of finding some kind of meaning from the tragedy she has experienced. Highly recommended for all public libraries.
The characters are frothy, the dialogue chipper, the introspection restricted. Death becomes just another hurdle on the way to self-betterment--along with weight-management and resume-padding. Are women this desperate? Effervescent, silly debut so eager to please that it reads like the speech of the candidate who won't open his mouth before the polls are consulted.
Billie Letts, author of Where The Heart Is
Lolly Winston had me from page one, really from the first paragraph...
Recent Reader Reviews
Rated of 5
by Melissa Surviving the quicksand At first I disliked this book, because it seemed to be going nowhere. There was little plot, there was little character development, it felt repetitive. Yet, I continued on and I'm glad I did. I realized that the book was the epitome of the... Read More
Rated of 5
by Mary Totally entertaining I loved this book. It made me laugh out loud and I have shared it with all my friends and family. I think Lolly did a wonderful job and can't wait to read more of her work.
Rated of 5
by Jody Whatever! This book started out on the right track. Winston's portrayal of grief was rather engaging. Then the hijinx begin. Every trendy element of modern society is covered. I found the year after the heiress' husbands death highly unbelievable and... Read More
Rated of 5
This book was laugh out loud funny! Having lived through a similar situation it was unnervingly familiar. It's tough to see the humerous side of death but she really succeeds. Thanks to author Winston for bringing back the memories and... Read More
Elisabeth Kubler Ross was
born in 1926 in Zurich, Switzerland and died
of natural causes in 2004 in Arizona. Her
ground breaking and bestselling book, On
Death and Dying, (1969) did much to
change the treatment of terminally ill
patients. She was compelled to write
it while working as a doctor in hospitals in
New York, Colorado and Chicago, where she
was appalled by the standard treatment for
dying patients: 'They were shunned and
abused; nobody was honest with them.'
Ross' five psychological stages of dying Denial - At first, we tend to deny the loss has taken place, and may...
Full of humor, clever insight, and a whimsical sense of the absurd - an irresistible and finely written fantasy for anyone who ever wondered what a certain age would look like from beyond the looking-glass.
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