Sunday, November 3, 2013

Finding Colin Firth by Mia March

Mia March has written a lovely novel about women making choices.  For Veronica Russo, it meant giving up her baby for adoption when she was a young sixteen year old mother.  For Bea Crane, it means traveling from Boston to the little town of Boothbay Harbor, Maine to find her birth mother.

How are they connected?  Well, Veronica is Bea's birth mother.  It's been 22 years, and Veronica has returned to Boothbay Harbor to face the place where she grew up, fell in love with a high school boy, got pregnant, and had her parents disown her and leave her at a home for unwed mothers.  She's always felt she did the right thing giving her baby up for adoption, but has always hoped to meet her daughter.  She's left her name, address, and phone number at the adoption agency every time she's moved around the country, but never received a call.  Now it was time to face the part of her life that has haunted her.  She's a waitress and is famous for her "elixir" pies: happiness pie, shoo-fly pie (drives someone out of your life), and amour pie.  People in town love them, and she's carving out a pretty good life in Boothbay Harbor, despite some people remembering the scandal from so long ago.

Bea finds out she's adopted a year after her mother has died, via a letter written on her mother's deathbed.  She goes through many emotions:  anger, despair, disillusionment.  Why did her parents never tell her the truth?  She's decided she has to find her birth mother and get some answers.

A film company is in Boothbay Harbor, and Colin Firth is rumored to be coming to film scenes for his movie.  Cue the crazy Colin Firth fans!  They're all gathering in town to spot a glimpse of the swoony actor.  Can Veronica find her own Mr. Darcy?  Can Bea come to terms with her true past?  And Gemma, a journalist from New York, who's come to escape a lost job and a surprising pregnancy.  How can she find happiness in Boothbay Harbor?

This was a good mental break book.  It touches on serious subjects:  teen pregnancy, adoption, and keeping secrets.  Throw in the film and all the craziness it brings to town, and the resulting references to all that is Colin Firth, and the story stays away from becoming maudlin.  It's all about embracing life, not being afraid to take chances, and knowing it's never too late to find happiness--even if you have to compromise with those you love in order for everyone to be happy.

Rating:  7/10; an enjoyable novel set in a charming small town with likable characters and tons of Colin Firth references.  From the author of The Meryl Streep Movie Club.

Available in paperback and e-book

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