Random House Publishing Group|May 7, 2013|Trade Paperback|ISBN: 978-0-345-50794-5
Perfect for fans of Jennifer Weiner and Emily Giffin, this tender and heartwarming novel explores the trials of losing what matters most –and how there’s always more than we can imagine left to find.
“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.
Libby Moran has lost her husband in a car accident and shorty after lost her home as her husband, Danny, had already cashed in their insurance policies and she couldn’t afford to pay for the house anymore. Libby, along with her two young children, Tank and Abby, moved in with her mother, Marsha.
Marsha and Libby had a love-hate relationship but Libby did her very best to bite her tongue and not get into too many arguments or confrontations with her. Ignoring, Marsha and her comments was not an easy thing to do but somehow, somewhere, Libby found the resolve she needed to keep the peace most of the time. Libby was often tired. She missed Danny terribly, worked hard all day as a bank teller, came home to cook dinner for the kids, do dishes, do bath and bedtime before falling into bed herself.
Out of the blue, Libby receives a letter from her Aunt Jean who was her mother’s sister. Marsha had always led Libby to believe that Aunt Jean was crazy. In her letter, Aunt Jean was offering to “rescue”, Libby from her mother with an invitation for her and the kids to move to her goat farm in Atwater, Texas and live there. Libby was awestruck but before she could really sit down and seriously consider this offer to uproot her little family, she was packing her van and then hit the road saying goodbye to Marsha.
When they arrive at Aunt Jean’s farm they are pleasantly surprised. The place is just crawling with animals: goats, dogs, cats, kittens, pigs, roosters, and even a peacock which thrills the kids to death. And, Libby soon learns Aunt Jean isn’t the slightest bit crazy, a bit eccentric maybe but definitely not crazy. It just so happens that Marsha and Jean hate each other for very good reason on Jean’s part.
Underneath the cool farmhouse, outbuildings, and animals, is a dashingly handsome man, O’Connor, who has more hair on his head and face than Grizzly Adams. O’Connor is the farm manager who teaches, Libby the ropes of what her daily chores will be. Hmmm….I wonder what will end up cooking with these two?
Then you’ll also meet, Sunshine, a formerly famous feedstore clerk who convinces, Libby that she can contact, Danny through séances.
Little Abby, unbeknownst to, Libby has been getting kick-ass fighting lessons from O’Connor, along with building a vocabulary of four-letter words to fight off a kid in her second grade class who constantly picks on her and teases her about her limping gait.
Libby soon begins to realize she hasn’t lost as much in her life as she’d originally thought but instead gained a real family and a place to call home.
The Lost Husband was just too good and too well-written to put down so I read it in one sitting. You’re going to get a real kick out of Aunt Jean and all the goings on at the farm. This was a great story!