This was quite a find, and ridiculously underpriced at only 20p to the UK market. A tale of a woman in her sixties finding true love and escaping an unhealthy marriage might not sound exciting, but it’s so well told that I devoured it in one go! When Jeanie reaches her 60th birthday, her family are ready to pack her off to the country to retire. Her quietly domineering husband has decided that she will sell her successful small business and fails to even notice or explain the lack of intimacy in their marriage.
While caring for her granddaughter one afternoon a week Jeanie meets Ray in the park (hence the title), with his grandson. Their friendship becomes more important as events transpire to keep them apart.
Kooks for your Kindle?– No wacky side-kicks in this tale, just real-life, unexaggerated, well portrayed characters. Jeanie’s daughter and son-in-law also have a troubled marriage, but with different problems, and that too is subtly written.
The Bella-Swan-Pathetically-Self-Sacrificing-Factor– Generally, when the main character in a book starts out in a bad situation, being oppressed by the bad-guy, you know they will finally snap and fight back. However, due to events beyond our heroine’s control, it does take a while and it’s a little painful to see someone so worn down by years of manipulation.
Painting a picture for your paperback?– It’s written from Jeanie’s point of view, and she clearly loves London, its neighbourhoods and parks. The book is also a touching depiction of how a grandparent’s love for their grandchild can be as powerful as a parent’s.
Nookie for your Nook?– Luckily for Jeanie, she puts the ‘sex’ in ‘sexagenarian’, but so tastefully that this could safely be recommended to the Mother-in-law.
Evaluation of your eBook?– Tricky to categorise this one, I’ve gone with ‘Frothy with Substance’ purely because it was so cheap and readable, but the subject matter (infidelity, child abuse, mental illness) would place it more in the ‘Much more Substantial’ category. It’s not as depressing as that might make it sound, and is a beautiful, subtle, nuanced tale of how age is no boundary to love and romance, and life does not end at 60!!
Frothy Ranking: 4/5 cocktails.