Looking for Me

Theodora Grace Overman, aka "Teddi," the narrator of Beth Hoffman's Looking for Me, always loved restoring old furniture. As a teenager, this farm girl with a big dream rebelled against her mother's push for secretarial school and ran away from her rural Kentucky home, setting off to Charleston, S.C., where she eventually opens a shop dedicated to the refurbishing of antiques.

"Old furniture speaks to me," says Teddi. "The older it is, the more it has to say." Such is the case with Teddi's life. When the workaholic finds herself successful but still single at the age of 36, she begins to reflect on the lost years while trying to understand the people she left behind: a mother who never understood her daughter's aspirations; a father who returned from war a completely changed man; and an enigmatic younger brother, Josh, whose love of nature and rescuing animals may have led to his mysterious disappearance and a final letter he left behind that read, "Don't come looking for me." 

When Teddi's mother takes ill, Teddi returns home, and strange occurrences indicate Josh might still be alive. Hoffman flashes back to events from Teddi's childhood in the 1960s and '70s, delving into the past in order to shape the contours of these interconnected, yet sadly detached, lives. As in Hoffman's debut novel, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt, Southern wit, charm and down-home characters add levity to a story of loss and broken hearts that are ultimately restored with love, hope and remembering. --Kathleen Gerard, blogger at Reading Between the Lines

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