Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors, where participants share excerpts of their books or works-in-progress. It’s a fun way to sample new books and find new authors! Be sure to check out their website. Today’s selection comes from my new release, The Book of Joy (the full synopsis is below). While our focus has been on Shannon and Joya, let’s not forget it was Evelyn and Gail who started all this, trying to match the two. But because things aren’t going as planned, Evelyn, having recruited her neighbor, Margery, into their ranks, has called a meeting of the matchmakers to discuss the situation.
“Maybe something happened at the cookout?” Margery offered.
Evelyn shrugged her shoulders: “I don’t know and Shannon’s not talking to me. It’s obvious he’s crazy about Joya, and I’ve seen the way Joya looks at him, but something’s preventing them from connecting; we’ve got to do something or I’m out of a daughter-in-law and a house.”
“What else is there?” Gail asked. She had gone to Evelyn for this reason: she wasn’t good at planning, plotting or matchmaking. In fact, it was a good thing Michael had found Joya, because there was no way Gail would have had the wherewithal to set him up with anyone.
The three women sat in silence, staring at each other for some kind of direction.
“There’s always the direct approach,” Margery ventured.
Shannon wants for nothing except the love of a good woman. However, he is so focused on his career and caring for his elderly mother Evelyn, he doesn’t realize he’s missing anything. Until he meets Joya, the widowed daughter-in-law of a family friend. She is a loving, generous woman who brings a much-needed spark into his life; but because she is younger than him and still dealing with the loss of her husband, he is hesitant to approach her.
Joya, for her part, maintains a good attitude about her situation and is appreciative of the people around her—especially Shannon, whose friendship fills the gaps in her life that would otherwise remain empty. But after burying her husband, she isn’t sure she has it in her to fall in love again.
This, of course, will not do for Evelyn, who sees the potential for love (and grandchildren) in them. Nor for Gail, the family friend, who has her own reasons for wanting to match the two. They go to great lengths to bring Shannon and Joya together. But as the four contend with the directions their lives are moving, they soon discover that sometimes life is more about letting yourself be loved than it is about falling into it.
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