DANCING ON THE EDGE OF THE ROOF

Sheila Williams, Author . Ballantine $12.95 (224p) ISBN 978-0-345-44873-6

The discovery of a stash of romance novels forever changes the life of a downtrodden nurse's aide in this engaging debut. Forty-two-year-old Juanita Lewis, an African-American woman with three grown children, has never read a book before, but once she starts, she can't stop. Emboldened by the stories, she decides to run away from home, change her life and seek adventure. No wonder: home is a two-bedroom apartment in the Columbus, Ohio, projects shared with grand-daughter Teishia; daughter Bertie, who's on welfare and sleeps until noon; and son Rashawn, a drug dealer likely to end up in jail alongside his brother Randy. All are left behind, when, despite their protests, Juanita buys a one-way bus ticket and heads west. In Paper Moon, Mont., her new life begins at breakfast in a diner where a standoff with angry chef/owner Jess Gardiner ends with Juanita at the stove cooking her own bacon and eggs. Two hours later, she's offered a job. No black folk have been seen in town since the Lewis and Clark expedition, and she becomes a sort of tourist attraction and local celebrity. Hoping for excitement, Juanita didn't dream she'd find romance as well. Her unlikely suitor is her taciturn employer, a Lakota descendant still haunted by his stint in Vietnam. This is an easy read, with lively dialogue and a fair share of comedy, but there's a credibility problem: would a longtime enabler and battered woman discover books and suddenly morph into a feisty feminist heroine? It's doubtful, but if so, hooray for literature. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 10/28/2002
Release date: 10/01/2002
Show other formats
FORMATS
Paperback - 240 pages - 978-0-345-45930-5
Hardcover - 306 pages - 978-0-7862-5903-8
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4498-8779-7
Mass Market Paperbound - 226 pages - 978-0-345-44874-3
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

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.