Harriet Beamer Takes the Bus

Joyce Magnin. Zondervan, $14.99 trade paper (320p) ISBN 978-0-310-33355-5
Magnin (Bright’s Pond series) continues her quirky ways with the titular character, a 72-year-old widow who takes the long way across the country when she reluctantly agrees to move in with her son and daughter-in-law in California. Her road trip is filled with bed-and-breakfasts, a GPS named Amelia, cancan dancers, petty criminals, dozens of salt-and-pepper shakers (she collects them), and—of course—increasing self-knowledge. Magnin breathes gentle life into the classic road trip structure. Harriet’s sheltered naïveté is occasionally beyond the bounds of belief, but Magnin has an energetic and confident sense of narrative rhythm and Harriet is funny and indelibly characterized. An extensive subplot involves Harriet’s writer son, Henry, and his lawyer wife Prudence, whose family plans are at a standstill after two miscarriages. Henry is more fully rendered than Prudence, who remains somewhat opaque. Not aimed at fans of dystopia and dysfunction, it’s a great read for fans of feisty-old-lady stories; spiritual elements are well blended in, like the right amount of seasoning from one of Harriet’s shakers. Agency: MacGregor Literary. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/26/2012
Release date: 04/01/2012
Show other formats
Hardcover - 407 pages - 978-1-61173-441-6
Open Ebook - 320 pages - 978-0-310-33356-2
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Email Address


Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.