Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Second Draft of My Life - Sara Lewis

Second Draft of My Life is a book about Charlotte Dearborn, a forty-two year old woman who has written five unsuccessful books, has a boyfriend who could take her or leave her. She ditches both boyfriend and writing career and decides to become an elementary school teacher. (Something her new colleagues laugh at--who ever heard of becoming a teacher for the money?)

On the cover of this book, there's a quote from the San Diego Union-Tribune: "Witty, smart...you'll breeze right through it." I agree wholeheartedly. Lewis's writing is not only this, but also heartfelt, honest and endearing; yet it refrains from being sickeningly sweet. I read this book in about two and a half hours, and I was hooked from the beginning. I never once thought, "Uhmmm, why did I pick this up?" I never drifted away from the book because something else looked vaguely more interesting. I was riveted--in fact, I let the phone go to the answering machine several times without even realizing it had rung.

Charlotte Dearborn is a wonderful main character with a funny, charming story. Of course, her kindergarten students are just as charming, and her various adventures and misadventures demonstrate her to be a real person--not in the sense that she walks around and has breakfast every morning in the same world as you and I, but in the sense that you sometimes forget she isn't physically real and that you can't write her a letter. Second Draft of My Life was, for me, a welcome, though brief, vacation from my own life and into the life of Charlotte Dearborn, and I heartily recommend it.

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