"You've written a wonderful story. By the end, the characters have become as much family to the reader as they are to each other."-- Jean Jenkins, Editor, San Diego, MSRewrite.com
"Debut author, Pat Dunlap Evans has written a poignant literary novel that explores an ordinary couple's enduring relationship years after a family tragedy. The story is told from the point of view of both the husband and wife who are reminiscent of Henry and Olive in Pulitzer prizewinning Elizabeth Stout's novel, Olive Kitteridge. The writing is crisp and the ending takes a surprising turn."-- Lara Reznik, best-selling Amazon author of The Girl From Long Guyland and The M&M Boys
From the Author
I'm a competitive spirit and suddenly I wanted to do this thing well: create characters that were alive with the joys and sorrows of life. My next assignment was to write an opening paragraph for four different novels, each with different narrative voices.
I was so nervous I could barely type, so I loosened up by having a beer. When I began writing the first-person segment, the character of Andrew spoke to me, saying, "I'm not concerned about getting old and bald and fat. I rather expected to be. But what concerns me are my memories. Who will have them when I'm gone? Not memories of me, mind you, but my own memories..."
When I presented my paragraph to the class, one of my classmates made a point to say, "But that's Proust!"--as though I had plagiarized the famous author. But I had never read Proust. Regardless, the idea of communicating one's memories stuck with me, and over time I wanted to find a way to help Andrew convey his.
The story has changed along the way, with the addition of very strong characters in Lizzy, Ouisie, Jane and the grandkids. In the end, it has become a family story, with communication and forgiveness at its core.
Please let me know if you enjoy this story. If so, you might also try my mystery-thriller OUT AND IN. It's heartfelt too, as much about a woman's emotional journey as "who done it." Male readers may not like OUT AND IN as much as TO LEAVE A MEMORY though.