Good to a Fault, Marina Endicott


“Once burnt, twice shy; but she did not want to be shy, she wanted to be with people.”

I’m not sure what to say about this book, other than it made me cry some of the realest tears I’ve cried all month. Maybe my blood sugar is low, or maybe Marina Endicott unknowingly wrote a book that would reflect back to me all the sad things about leading a relatively solitary existence.

Enter Clara, stage left. Clara is an early-forties insurance adjuster. She lives alone in a house bequeathed by her deceased mother. The book opens with Clara crashing into a beat-up car carrying a family of six. Everyone is fine, except the mother has cancer. She invites the family to stay with her, and so the story really begins. Clara is wrapped up entirely in caring for these children, and she begins an unexpected romance with a reverend.

I don’t know, man. As I told Matthew, I just want someone to love the gentle decrease of my ribs, and I didn’t know I wanted that until I read this book. Except that I suppose I did, and I wasn’t admitting it – being alone is only easy sometimes. When you read 29 books in 28 days, you spend a lot of time alone, and stories do a good job filling in the gaps – until they point out exactly where the gaps are.  Endicott’s beautiful domestic rhythms made everything in this book so engaging it hurt. I’m grateful for that. And I’m not.

Books read: 29


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