Tyndale, May 2008, $12.99
After seeing life as half empty for a decade since her mother walked out on her, Julia DeSmit drops out of college coming home pregnant. She vows to change her negative attitude for the sake of her baby thinking in terms of slicing off the top of the cup so that her cup is filled.
Julia lives with her beloved grandma who gave her a home when her mom abandoned her. She also works at the grocery store. However, Julia’s new found positivism collapses when her mother Janice comes home expecting a warm welcome on a chilly March evening. Her daughter’s anger and acrimony explodes as Julia wants Janice to just leave as she wants nothing to do with her mother although she sees herself somewhat in the same predicament that Janice faced.
This is a terrific character study of three generations of women struggling with the return of the sandwiched one who had previously abandoned her mom and daughter. The trio is fully developed so that the audience will feel they know why each behaves the way they do especially with one another. Fans will appreciate Julia’s lament as she begins to understand what her mother faced and what it means to forgive. However, being human and not divine she cannot forget and thus has doubts she can ever accept Janice as her blood relative especially since Grandma is more her mom than her biological mother ever was. This is a strong contemporary look at three related females trying to reconnect even as the fourth generation is coming.