Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Commuters by Emily Gray Tedrowe

In Commuters, Emily Gray Tedrowe explores a topic rarely discussed, that of love found by the elderly and the complications a late second marriage entails.

Winnie McClelland is seventy-eight on her wedding day; Jerry Travis a few years older.  Winnie has lived in the same commuter town outside New York City her entire life; Jerry is a successful businessman who is very wealthy.  Neither expected to be lucky enough to find love again at their age.  Nor did they expect the complications and joys that would arise from their union.

As in all second marriages, the children of the first marriage have a major adjustment to make.  Winnie's daughter, Rachel, also lives in town.  Rachel's family has had major life adjustments after her husband is in a horrific accident that leaves him in a coma for several weeks and needing major rehabilitation afterwards.  Now she has to adjust to her diminished role as her mother's confidant and advisor.  Jerry's daughter, Annette, is adamantly against the marriage and regards Winnie as a gold digger, only after Jerry's money.  She ups the ante by suing her father for control of the business he has built and left in her charge.

Annette's son, Avery, has had little contact with his grandfather.  But he is now on his own in New York, and develops a relationship with both Jerry and Winnie.  He is starting out in many ways.  He has just found a new love, Nona, and is feeling his way towards a career as a chef.  For the first time in his life, he is feeling the comfort and reassurance of an accepting family life.

All the characters react in different fashions as Jerry's health deteriorates, and these reactions make up the second half of the book.  Emily Tedrowe explores what it means to get older and what is important to us as we age.  She delves into family relationships and the difficulties that they bring along with the joy.

This book is recommended for all readers.  The characters are vibrant, and the reader will remember them long after the book is put away.  The topic is one that many readers will encounter, either as the participant in an older love relationship, or as the child of someone in the situation.  Commuters gives guidance and hope; an uplifting book that lyrically explores the facets of love and family.


Anonymous said...

I'm glad this book worked well for you. I know that I am still thinking about it and feel the author got a lot of things just right. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

DCMetroreader said...

I've seen this one around the blog world. I think I might want to read it. Nice review!

Anonymous said...

Many people are facing the issues of a late 2nd marriage these days, whether as a partner in the marriage or as a family member. It really is a unique challenge to deal with.

I'm glad you enjoyed the book. Thanks for being a part of the tour!