With a startling sensitivity for human tragedy and the ability of the heart to heal, Luanne Rice has written a moving account of one woman's internal journey in Follow the Stars Home
. Married young to Tim McIntosh, a passionate and charismatic fisherman with a troubled heart, Dianne Robbins expects a future full of happiness, security, and love. But when tests reveal that their unborn baby is severely disabled, Tim sails off for calmer waters. Faced with the responsibilities of raising her daughter Julia, Dianne finds support in Tim's brother Alan and her own mother Lucinda.
A decade later, Dianne has mastered the demands of nursing Julia and swears her life is completely fulfilled by these tasks. When Alan introduces Amy Brooks, a young and troubled girl, into Dianne's life, Dianne finds her heart opening and stretching in new and positive ways. As her mother Lucinda explains, "The biggest mistake any of us can make is thinking that love is a feeling, an emotion. It's not that at all. It's an action." And Dianne struggles over the choice to love again.
Beautifully written with exquisite moments of tranquility, Follow the Stars Home describes the multiple ways that love can be acted. With a dash of suspense included, this novel will keep readers' fingers flipping through the pages as fast as they can. --Nancy R.E. O'Brien
From Publishers Weekly
Sufferers are transformed by the transcendent power of love in Rice's (Cloud Nine) uplifting if flawed new family relationship drama. Life has not proved easy for single mom Dianne Robbins, of Gull Point, Conn. Abandoned by her husband, lobsterman Tim McIntosh, just before their daughter Julia was born with spina bifida and Rett syndrome--a debilitating physical condition and an autism-like disorder, respectively--Dianne supports herself and Julia by building children's playhouses. At the age of 11, Julia weighs 29 pounds, and there is no guarantee she will live much longer; yet she has a magical radiance. Despite the difficulties of caring for a severely disabled child, Dianne is never bitter, and her relationship with Julia is hope filled and loving. Dianne had also believed that her strong love would repair Tim's damaged self-esteem and save their marriage. Now she is wary of getting involved with a man again. But Tim's brother, Alan, who also happens to be Julia's pediatrician, has been secretly in love with Dianne for years, and his steadfast devotion may be just what she needs. Meanwhile, Amy Brook, an adorable 12-year-old from a troubled family (and a familiar device in Rice's novels), finds sanctuary in the Robbins household and becomes Julia's best friend; through Amy's example, Dianne finally understands what true love means. The author takes an unaccustomed shortcut when she reveals the plot's conclusion through heretofore silent Julia's thoughts. Had Rice interwoven Julia's reactions throughout the book, the final chapter would not seem a quick device to tie up loose ends. Still, the novel's theme--love's miraculous ability to heal--has the ingredients to warm readers' hearts. Major ad/promo. (Feb.) FYI: Rice's Cloud Nine will be released as a mass market paperback in January.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.