Published by Tule Publishing Group on October 8th 2014
Genres: Romance, Women's Fiction
Paperback provided by BookSparks
Behind every lost dream lies a second chance... When adored town spinster Joy Talley ends up in a coma after a peculiar accident, she is surprised and incensed to hear what is being said in her hospital room, including plans for her funeral. When she finally wakes, her well-meaning, but bossy, brothers and sisters dismiss her claims, thinking her accident has knocked her off her rocker, but Joy has never felt better, and is determined to set the past right. Now Joy must face her darkest secret and risk reopening wounds caused by an old flame who rejected her more than twenty years ago. But taking risks brings change, as well as a new, younger man into Joy's life, making her feel like a teenager again. Suddenly Joy's once humdrum life is anything but boring and routine and the future beckons, exhilarating and bright.
The tour is finally here and I am really excited to be part of this. Waking Up Joy was not an everyday read for me. It was a breath of fresh air. This book had me overjoyed and crying, it made me forget the world if only for a short while. Accompanying Joy on her journey was such fun and full of endearing surprises.
This book follows a woman named Joy Talley as she slips off her roof and ends up in a coma. He whole family thinks she tried to kill herself. They don’t realize she can hear and will remember everything going on around her while in her coma. If that set up isn’t enough we learn that Joy is a forty-something spinster, she has been pining away for a now windowed man for almost thirty years. She awakens, at her mother’s funeral, of all places, after being stolen from the hospital by her mostly “crazy” family. Joy is accompanied by her niece’s diary and her honest telling of Joy’s story. Upon awakening and through the reading of the diary, Joy decides to set things right and make some real changes.
I so enjoyed this read. It was a great escape for me. Getting to know Joy and her crazy family was a whole lot of fun. Joy’s adventure is not unbelievable or far-fetched. If not for the coma, she might have existed and died never really living, which is so sad. I loved the small town and everyone knowing everyone. The Talley house is so full of life and filled my heart with longing for my own crazy kin. Joy is the one left at home, she is lonely although she might not have admitted that. Her siblings have all gone on to pursue their lives and she is the one left behind. Although things are not perfect for them, they have no trouble telling Joy what she need to do. Is she a bit like her Momma, and casting spells and charms on those around her? Does she need professional care? The Talley house is full of trinkets of spells and the memories of teas for everything that ails you. Joy breaks out of her shell and shows her family that she is not crazy, she is just a Talley.
I felt completely at home reading Joy’s tale. I found myself missing her mother, and wanting Jimmy right along side of her. I cried my way through the last chapter. I am not sure if it was the years lost, or the angst of missed opportunity, or maybe it was just a spoke in my menstrual cycle. It doesn’t matter because a book that can bring me to tears becomes a part of me. The characters in this book will remain with me.
About the Author
Tina Ann Forkner writes women’s fiction. She is the author of Ruby Among Us and Rose House (Random House), as well as a forthcoming novel Waking Up Joy (Tule) When not writing, Tina is a substitute teacher who loves sharing her appreciation of reading and writing with children and teens. She enjoys traveling, gardening, and hiking in the great outdoors, is (still) learning to knit scarves, trying to cut back on caffeine, and not much makes her happier than an extra-large mocha.
Before making her way to Wyoming, Tina grew up in small-town Oklahoma, moved for a time to England, and eventually to Sacramento where she graduated with honors in English from Sac State. She makes her home in Cheyenne with her husband, three teens, and two spoiled dogs.
Tina has a passion for libraries and served on the Laramie County Library Foundation Board of Directors in Wyoming for six years holding various offices including Foundation President. She volunteers with her church’s youth group and likes to be involved in various volunteer roles when she isn’t on a deadline.
Tina’s articles and essays have appeared in various publications, including Homecoming Magazine and around the blogosphere. She is also a poet at heart, having had poems published in small press literary journals, including the Sacramento Poetry Center’s journal, Poetry Now, under the pen name Tina Linde, and has had columns appear in the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle under the same pen name.