When sharp-edged Frances Moon and her long-time partner encounter a funeral procession that brings traffic to a halt, she finds herself blurting out the barest thread of a story that she never intended to share. The reverberations drive her back to the past and her mother's old rental property, the lone house in a failed subdivision called Liberty Street.
There, memories are ghosts: Frances's mother on her way to Nashville to become a country singer; her father determined to run his farm despite his failing eyesight; the town's bad apple, Dooley Sullivan; a string of renters including the December bride, Esme Bigalow, and a man who met a tragic end, Silas Chance.
When a domestic mishap and a torrential hailstorm send Frances to the questionable safety of an eccentric neighbour's kitchen, she learns just how unreliable memory is, and that she was not the only one whose life after Elliot, Saskatchewan was determined by half-truths and bad decisions.
With depth, insight and the subtle humour for which she is known, Dianne Warren gives us an engrossing and touching new novel about disappointment, anger and the redemptive power of kindness. (From HarperCollins Publishers)
A statement of fact, not a question: "I've come to take you to the movie show."
It's Joe Fletcher, who has driven into the yard on a warm Saturday evening in July. Frances's father had thought he'd come on business, but Joe asked to speak to Frances.
Frances grabs a sweater off the hook by the door and says to her parents, "I'm going out for a bit." She doesn't tell them where she's going. She doesn't give them a chance to say, "You're not going anywhere with that man," which is what she knows they would say, or at least her mother would. She doesn't look back as she and Joe leave the yard and drive toward town.
From Liberty Street by Dianne Warren ©2015. Published by HarperCollins.