Monday, August 23, 2010

The Home For Broken Hearts-Rowena Coleman

The Home For Broken Hearts
Rowena Coleman
Gallery (Pocket), Sep 7 2010, $15.00
ISBN: 9781439156858

Ever since her husband Nick died in a car accident last year, Widow Ellen Wood has struggled with moving on though she must care for her eleven years old son Charlie. Leaving her home is impossible as that is her safehouse from the deadly world at large. However, money has become an issue, but stepping outside remains impossible as she tries with her concerned caring sister Hannah.

When Hannah’s London coworker Sabine from Germany needs a place to live having left her husband, she suggests to her agoraphobic sibling renting out rooms in her large Victorian. Sabine, Allegra the romance novelist and Matt the journalist lease rooms from Ellen, who has doubts about bringing in strangers. However, Ellen begins to realize how cut off she has been and how much she is hurting her son. Soon Matt inspires her to take chances on life for her sake and that of Charlie. As family secrets become known, she opens the door, but the next step is gigantic.

The Home For Broken Hearts is a warm tender character study that focuses mostly on the grieving widow, but also goes deep into the souls of her family and boarders. That strong fully developed cast makes for a strong contemporary even with expecting the spins that occur. Rowena Coleman provides a profound tale that will have the audience wondering whether Ellen takes that humongous first step out the door.

Harriet Klausner

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