Second Acts

Second Acts by Teri Emory depicts the enduring friendship among three women who met as students at Buffalo College in the late 1960s; now in middle age, each narrates one of three sections of this vivid first novel.

The story begins when New York City marketing writer Sarah Roth learns that her ex-husband--the father of their daughter, Elle--has died of a sudden heart attack. The news forces Sarah to take stock of her life--her work and her current post-divorce relationship--through the prism of the past while trying to formulate a vision for the future. The 30-year marriage of Beth Gillian, a psychotherapist, is tested after she and her husband, a "Wall Street Wunderkind," bury a child. Beth reconnects with an old college flame who rallies her spirit and inspires her to contemplate the road not taken. Miriam Kaplan, a teacher in Manhattan, has remained single over the years; her life changed after a passionate romance with a charming photographer from the South. This experience left her reluctant to engage in a new relationship with a man whose sweetness helps her through a difficult passage in life.

Emory's unhurried prose braids the complex personal stories of these three women as they come to grips with loss, choices and compromise. All the while their bond of friendship flourishes in a changing world. --Kathleen Gerard, blogger at Reading Between the Lines

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