Lavanya Karthik: Lavanya is from Mumbai, India and is a licensed
architect and consultant in environmental management. She lives in
Mumbai with her husband and six-year old daughter. She loves reading
and enjoys a diverse range of authors across genres.
Fifteen years after completing his acclaimed GroVont trilogy, author Tim Sandlin takes us back to that fictional town in Wyoming to see what happens next. After the rollercoaster ride that was his journey through ‘Skipped Parts’, ‘Sorrow Floats’ and ‘Social Blunders’, Sandlin’s hapless hero Sam Callahan is now settled into life as a married man , father and manager of the Virgin Birth Home for Unwed Mothers. And as if he wasn’t already beleaguered by the women in his life – his wife, his ex-wife, his adult daughter, his hormonal teenaged wards - his eccentric mother Lydia arrives to stir things up. And this isn't just an ordinary visit from grandma - Lydia is out on parole after a stint in prison, for attempting to assassinate the First Pooch.
Before long, she has vandalized a grocery store and antagonized her parole officer, then promptly sets off on a road trip with Sam’s foster son and a crotchety ninety nine year old, with Sam in hot pursuit. But danger lurks, as a menacing figure from the boy’s past appears to settle ancient scores . Of course, their paths will cross in the kind of finale that we have come to expect from Sandlin – equal parts slapstick and suspense, chockfull of ‘laugh-out-loud’ness . Also unexpectedly tragic just when it is at its funniest.
‘Lydia’ , like its prequels is wildly funny, bristling with kooky, unpredictable characters and boisterously celebrating that most American of all literary tropes – the dysfunctional family. For in Sandlin’s GroVont, embarrassing relatives are practically a tradition. But the real surprise in this zany ensemble cast is Oly Pendersen , Lydia’s geriatric fellow traveler who survives (or claims to have) a stunning array of disasters - earthquakes, exploding boilers, a World War, grizzly attacks, the odd case of clap, even a run-in with Picasso – only to be confounded by heartbreak. But rest assured, for ‘Lydia’ is also about closure and second chances and Sandlin, with characteristic wit and flourish, writes every one of his characters the endings he thinks they deserve.
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