So Happy Together
Deborah K. Shepherd
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As her stultifying marriage is unravelling, and in the midst of mourning the loss of her creative self, Caro Tanner has a nightmare about Peter, an old love whom she hasn’t seen in twenty years. She takes this as a sign he still needs her. With her three children safely off to summer camp, Caro embarks on a pre-Facebook, pre–cell phone road trip to recapture who she once was and what she thinks she once had. Set in the sex, drugs, and rock ’n roll ’60s in Tucson, Arizona—when Caro and Peter were kooky, colorful, and inseparable drama students—and in the suburban ’80s, when Caro’s creative spark has been quenched to serve the needs of her husband and children, So Happy Together explores the conundrum of love and sexual attraction, creativity and family responsibilities, and what happens when they are out of sync. It is a story of missed opportunities, the tantalizing possibility of second chances, and what we leave behind, carry forward, and settle for when we choose. It sits in that raw, messy, confounding, beautiful place where love resides.
“Shepherd takes us on a literal ride into the not-so-distant past, remembering how naïve we were before we understood there are things you just can’t change—even if you’re destined, even if you’re soulmates, even if you’re willing to risk everything . . . The reader will ache at the forced (and quite salty) sass of the young narrator, desperate to show it doesn’t hurt, and highly enjoy the ironic wit of the mature voice who knows better and goes for it all the same. A story for anyone who can relate to how we cling to a fantasy of the past to avoid committing to the present.” <br> —Rita Dragonette, author of <i>The Fourteenth of September </i> <br> <br> “Many of us waste years fantasizing about a lost love, but the feisty heroine in <i>So Happy Together</i> takes to the road to track him down. This compelling novel is about how a smart and lusty drama student in the tumultuous ’60s discovers twenty years later that she’s trapped in a failing marriage. Shepherd’s engaging characters make mistakes, hurt, and lash out, yet ultimately clean up the mess with kindness and humor. Their search for understanding is what ultimately sets them free.” <br> —Elizabeth Garber, author of <i>Implosion: A Memoir of an Architect’s Daughter </i>
Coming of age novel, Family Responsibility, Divorce, Creative expression, Self-discovery story, Plot twist, Old friends, Star-crossed lovers, 1960s fiction, Love and sexual attraction