A world of possibilities opens up for Joy Harkness when she sets out on a journey that’s going to show her the importance of friendship, love, and what makes a house a home
Coming-of-age can happen at any age. Joy Harkness had built a university career and a safe life in New York, protected and insulated from the intrusions and involvements of other people. When offered a position at Amherst College, she impulsively leaves the city, and along with generations of material belongings, she packs her equally heavy emotional baggage. A tumbledown Victorian house proves an unlikely choice for a woman whose family heirlooms have been boxed away for years. Nevertheless, this white elephant becomes the home that changes Joy forever. As the restoration begins to take shape, so does her outlook on life, and the choices she makes over paint chips, wallpaper samples, and floorboards are reflected in her connection to the co-workers who become friends and friendships that deepen. A brilliant, quirky, town fixture of a handyman guides the renovation of the house and sparks Joy’s interest to encourage his personal and professional growth. Amid the half-wanted attention of the campus’s single, middle-aged men, known as “the Coyotes,”and the legitimate dramas of her close-knit community, Joy learns that the key to the affection of family and friends is being worthy of it, and most important, that second chances are waiting to be discovered within us all.
Written by Joyce Meier (above), A Season of Second Chances, is a novel about a woman who was void of any real emotional connections to other individuals, while wildly successful in her career. An opportunity to completely uproot and try something new is a welcomed change met with many unforseen challenges and also opportunities for growth. I enjoyed reading the book for several reasons. I enjoyed watching Joy turn from a recluse to a person who embraces life. I also enjoyed hearing about the challenges she met in buying this old Victorian home, as my husband and I went through a similar experience last year, and while it can be quite a headache, it also creates many memories. I would recommend this novel to anyone who is stuck in a rut and considering making a change; it just may give you the push you need to do it!