BOOK TITLE: Comfort of Fences
AUTHOR: Stacy Overman Morrison
GENRE: Contemporary Fiction/ Women’s Fiction/ Family Saga
NUMBER OF PAGES: 244
SERIES / STANDALONE: Standalone
REVIEW BY: Dhivya Balaji
HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: This book is a part of the Virtual authors Book tour.
Comfort of Fences explores the unconditional love between a trio of women: Ruth, the matriarch and builder of boundaries; Denise, her special-needs adult daughter with powerful secrets of her own; and Georgia, Ruth’s best friend and source of strength and practicality. The dynamics of their relationships expose the ironies that the people we love the most can also be the people we most underestimate and that the strongest of loves has nothing to do with romance.
There are some books that give you an idea about what the author is trying to say on the jacket itself. There are some books that make the jacket blurb so intense and exciting (unfortunately if you delve in deeper, that will be the (only?) best part of the book). Then there are books that are written with a meaning. Something showing you very little of its depth on the cover but manages to draw you in slowly with the progress of the story line. Comfort of Fences is one such book.
Love need not always be romantic. (Actually this should have been the first line of the review. The number of romance novels is too damn high, nowadays). A woman need not be a man’s doll (girls these days need to drill this into their heads). And you often underestimate the gifts you actually have (some don’t even realise it is a gift until it is gone). A decision that seems perfect to you now might actually be flawed and actually throw your life into a muddle (just because you are a parent doesn’t give you a right to ruin your child’s life). Comfort of Fences tells all of this in a poignant tale.
An old mother dying of cancer has a challenged daughter who is an adult in her body and child in her mind. An even older woman is a friend and herds the family into proper paths during times good and bad. Three different women, three different view points on a single decision.
Ruth thinks all decisions she has made so far on Denise were for her own good. But her very belief is challenged when cancer rears its ugly head and threatens to take her away.
Denise adores her momma and there is no one else she’d rather be with. To the 52 year old little girl, her momma is the world and she loves her unconditionally. Though unable to understand the pain and suffering, she offers simple answers to life’s tough questions.
Georgia, always the symbol of practicality, is a beacon of a lighthouse guiding Ruth and Denise towards a sensible direction. She is the friend who helps Ruth die in peace rather than cry over her uselessly, subjecting her to pain.
The story and the plot are straightforward and amazingly simple. They are the basic foundation on which the rich texture of the emotions build. The characterisation gives a nostalgic feeling. The leads make all the decisions you will probably make when faced with a similar situation. There is some sort of camaraderie you can feel with all three women.
There is no obvious drag because you see the stories unfold in first person and you feel like you have seen a movie that goes into flashbacks. Be it the mother who writes her story down for her girl or the daughter who gets ready to face the world without her momma, you will find the book touching at places.
The credibility of the plot is also high, because it is a story that can happen to anyone. Yes, the book is heavy. Yes, there are parts which make you cry. Yes, there are a few scenes which you wish had never happened. But in the end, it is the mirror of life. Every day will not be as you wanted. And that is the thrill of it, after all!
WHAT I LIKED: The characters, and the whole concept that the strongest love is not romantic. There is more in a woman’s life than a man.
WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN BETTER: Some parts of the detailed explanation, though intended to make the reader understand, is lending a bit of a drag.
VERDICT: Every strong woman needs to read this. To all you men out there, understand that women can have a bond stronger than marriage could ever create. To all you women out there, understand that you need not always be under a man’s wing. He is a spoke in the wheel, not the wheel itself! I rest my case!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Stacy Overman Morrison was born and raised in Texas. She earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s of Arts degrees in English from the University of Texas of the Permian Basin. Upon completion of her Master’s, she taught secondary English and adjuncted at the University. She took time off from her teaching career after the birth of her second daughter and has pursued her writing since. She continues to live in Texas with her husband, two daughters, two dogs, and two horses. This is her first novel and she is hard at work listening to the voices of her characters in her second.
EDITIONS AVAILABLE: paperback, ebook.
PRICE: $2.99 for Kindle, $9.99 for paperback.
BOOK LINKS: http://www.amazon.com/Comfort-Fences-Stacy-Overman-Morrison/dp/1939927560/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1390172728&sr=1-1