GOOD TO A FAULT
BY MARINA ENDICOTT
Shortlisted for Canada's prestigious Giller Prize, this "profoundly humane novel" (Vancouver Sun), wrings suspense and humor out of the everyday choices we make, revealing the delicate balance between sacrifice and self-interest, doing good and being good.
Clara Purdy is at a crossroads. At forty-three, she is divorced, living in her late parents' house, and nearing her twentieth year as a claims adjuster at a local insurance firm. Driving to the bank during her lunch hour, she crashes into a sharp left turn, taking the Gage family in the other car with her. When bruises on the mother, Lorraine, prove to be late-stage cancer, Clara decides to do the right thing. She moves Lorraine's three children and their terrible grandmother into her own house—and then has to cope with the consequences of practical goodness: exhaustion, fury, hilarity, and unexpected love.
What, exactly, does it mean to be good? What do we owe each other in this life, and what do we deserve? Good to a Fault is an ultimately joyful book that digs deep, with leavening humor, into questions of morality, class, and social responsibility. Marina Endicott looks at life and death through the compassionate, humane lens of a born novelist: being good, being at fault, and finding some balance in between.ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Marina Endicott was born in Golden, British Columbia, and grew up in Nova Scotia and Toronto. She worked as an actor and director in Toronto before going to London, England, where she began to write fiction. In 1984 she went west to Saskatoon, and worked as a director and dramaturge. She ran the Saskatchewan Playwrights Centre for many years before going farther west with Peter Ormshaw, a journalist and poet, on his first posting with the RCMP to Mayerthorpe, Alberta. They eventually married and have two children, Will and Rachel. Marina’s first novel, Open Arms, was nominated for the Amazon/Books in Canada First Novel Award in 2002, and her long poem, "The Policeman's Wife, Some Letters," about the murders of four Mounties in Mayerthorpe in 2005, was short-listed for the national CBC Literary Awards in 2006. Her second novel, Good to a Fault, won the Commonwealth Writers Prize for the Canada/Caribbean region, was a finalist for the 2008 Giller Prize, and was one of the featured books for Canada Reads in 2010. She is at work on a new novel, The Belle Auroras, about a sister-trio-harmony vaudeville act touring the Canadian prairies in 1909.
Marina Endicott’s GOOD TO A FAULT is an absolutely captivating look at people, and what it really means to be a labeled a good person. It is the story of Clara Purdy, a lonely middle-aged woman who one day takes her car and accidentally slams into the vehicle and lives of the people in another car; the entire Gage family. The Gage family consists of two parents, three kids, and one cantankerous grandmother and this accident not only totaled their vehicle but also their lives. You see this family was homeless and slept in their car. Luckily, everyone comes away unhurt when they are checked out at the hospital except for the mother, Lorraine. Although not hurt in the accident, it is found that she has late-stage lymphoma.
Knowing the accident is her own fault, Clara feels the guilt and wants to make things right so without thinking it through, she invites the bewildered Gage family into her own home. This will allow Lorraine, who is presumed to be in her final days, to at least get treatment for her illness. Clara embraces her new life once she gets used to not having her home peaceful and orderly and yet, she is often treated poorly by some of the Gage family members. She adores the children and begins to treat them as her own but before long the father takes her car and leaves town.
Minor characters also play important roles in the story. There is a recently widowed priest who begins to find himself in love with Clara…or is it just that he is seeking solace after his loss? The children’s feelings toward Clara (often known as Clary by now) are varied from defiant with fear of disloyalty to their mother, to one who thinks he feels real love for her. Lorraine feels she owes Clara so much but honestly can’t really feel any gratitude.
GOOD TO A FAULT will have you questioning some of the motives of each of these well written characters especially Clara. Is she really doing this out of a sense of responsibility, or is she somewhat selfish and wants this instant family to fill her lonely life? She relates to baby Pearce as “mine”. But with Marina Endicott’s well drawn characters, you have a good base to relate to each one of the people in this story. She even give the reader a nice ending as all the questions are answered and everything is put in its proper place. I think if you like a good story with well written characters, you will enjoy GOOD TO A FAULT.
AT HARPER COLLINS PUBLISHING,
I HAVE 3 COPIES OF THIS WONDERFUL
BOOK TO GIVE AWAY. HERE IS WHAT
YOU NEED TO DO TO WIN A COPY!
--NO P. O. BOXES
---INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS
IN CASE YOU WIN!
--ALL COMMENTS MUST BE SEPARATE TO
COUNT AS MORE THAN ONE!
HOW TO ENTER:
6 PM, EST, JUNE 6!