Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Last Dance at the Jitterbug Lounge-Pamela Morsi

Last Dance at the Jitterbug Lounge
Pamela Morsi
Mira, May 2008, $13.95
ISBN: 9780778325192

In Texas, Jack and Claire Crabtree are raising three children while successfully having built a pool-cleaning business. However, they have recently fought over everything; especially contentious is the house Jack built that he wants his family to move into while Claire is happy with their present home and refuses to dislocate their children (nine years old Zaidi and six years old twins Peyton and Presley) just because her husband believes bigger and newer mean better.

When his family informs Jack that his grandfather is in a coma, he goes home to Catawah, Oklahoma, a place he avoids like the plague because he is embarrassed by his roots. Claire, who has never met his side, accompanies him. Meeting his family is a stunner for Claire who learns a lot about what makes Jack tick as she realize she may love him but did not know Jack about him; maybe it is time she did.

There are two relationship dramas; obviously that of Jack and Claire, but also flashbacks that provide readers with insight into that of his grandparents, Bud and Geri. This technique enables the audience to compare the eras and to contrast the similarities and differences between the relationships. Fans will enjoy this poignant character study as Claire and readers learn first hand why Jack buried his roots and why big and new are better.

Harriet Klausner

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