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Mad Dash

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The puppy started it.

The poor thing was cold and trembling, abandoned on their front doorstep. Dash, impulsive as always, decides on the spot that they should keep it. But her husband, Andrew, thinks it’s the craziest thing he’s ever heard. A fight over a scruffy little dog doesn’t seem like much of a reason to walk out on your husband of twenty years - but the spat over ...
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The puppy started it.

The poor thing was cold and trembling, abandoned on their front doorstep. Dash, impulsive as always, decides on the spot that they should keep it. But her husband, Andrew, thinks it’s the craziest thing he’s ever heard. A fight over a scruffy little dog doesn’t seem like much of a reason to walk out on your husband of twenty years - but the spat over the puppy is just the last of many straws.

Dash is so tired of the faculty parties at Mason-Dixon College that Andrew insists they attend even though he won’t mingle with his colleagues, tired of his constant fretting over illnesses he doesn’t have, tired of the glass of warm milk he must have every night before bed. Why can’t he see that with her mother gone and their daughter off at college, Dash needs something more?

Now, living on her own for the first time in years, Dash can do whatever she wants…if only she could figure out what that is. But every time she starts making plans for the future, she finds herself thinking about the past - remembering the mother she’s lost, her daughter’s childhood, and the husband she isn’t entirely sure she wants to leave behind…
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Editorial Reviews

Brigitte Weeks
The scene is vividly set, and we actually come to care about these two diametrically opposed veterans of 20 years together…there isn't a phony bone in Dash's body, and we definitely want to hang around to see how the pieces finally end up on the matrimonial chessboard.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly

Gaffney's latest (after The Goodbye Summer) chronicles a 20-year marriage on the verge of imploding. Vivacious, impulsive professional photographer Dash Bateman is the opposite of her worrywart, straitlaced husband, Andrew, a history professor at Mason-Dixon College. After Dash's mother dies and the couple packs off their daughter for her freshman year at college, Dash's crisis of purpose culminates with Dash fleeing her house and husband for an extended stay in the couple's isolated cabin. As they attempt to live without one another, Andrew flirts with a feisty younger colleague and salivates over the chance to be chair of his department (if he can navigate the politics), and Dash finds a substitute mother, daughter and potential love interest. Gaffney tells the story from both Dash's and Andrew's points-of-view, allowing readers to see how the two frustrate and fall in love with one another. The writing is lively, though scenes involving conversations about the nature of love and relationships can turn tedious. The climax teeters on the edge of being over the top, but the denouement is just rosy. It's a lot of fun, and the faults are easily forgiven. (Aug.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Kirkus Reviews
Two bourgeois bohemians shake up their tepid marriage, achieving only stasis in Gaffney's (The Goodbye Summer, 2004, etc.) innocuous latest. It hits Dash Bateman at another interminable faculty soiree: Her husband of 20 years, Andrew, associate history professor at tiny Mason-Dixon College in D.C., is a crashing bore. Not only does he say "em" instead of "um" though he's not British, he's a hypochondriac, beset by allergies. When he won't let her keep a puppy someone has abandoned in the doorway of their townhouse, Dash and dog flee to the Bateman's pond-side country cottage. At first, Andrew is too preoccupied with campus politics to register Dash's absence. He could win a promotion to full professor and department chair if only he'd compromise his liberal leanings by helping a right-wing colleague. Raven-haired, wasp-tongued academic Elizabeth appeals to Andrew's baser instincts as she tries to enlist him in her Machiavellian plots. Dash studies muskrats, photographs butterflies and gets embroiled in the lives of Shevlin, the cottage handyman, his wife Cottie, a recovering heart patient, and their hunky son-in-law Owen, clearly a salt-of-the-earth foil to Andrew. Owen is not only indispensable at closet building and kitchen-cabinet refinishing, he single-handedly works an organic farm and cattle ranch, plying Dash with duck eggs and homespun bromides. Dash commutes to Washington to run her photography studio with the help of new assistant Greta, who reminds her of herself at 25, when she was (improbably) a spiky haired punkette. Preternaturally calm Chloe, the Batemans' daughter, would mediate her parents' estrangement if only she could identify its source. Her bafflement is shared by acouples counselor, but readers will recognize in the separation a transparent plot device: Errant spouses are tempted by infidelity, though it's obvious neither will succumb. A trip to the hospital occasioned by folksy Cottie's arrhythmia and Andrew's not-so-imaginary affliction is enough to corral the principals for the inevitable happy and edifying denouement. Like its characters, risk averse. Agent: Amy Berkower/Writers House LLC
From the Publisher
“I loved MAD DASH. Patricia Gaffney’s books are always heartfelt and wise
–but most of all, laugh-out-loud funny–and this one is my favorite yet!”

—Janet Evanovich

“With humor and compassion, Patricia Gaffney tells the story of a marriage, and the flawed and fascinating people inside it. Both touching and funny, MAD DASH is an intimate view, through the eyes of characters who resonate, of the human heart.”

--Nora Roberts

“I fell in love with MAD DASH. Head over heels. It's must reading for any woman who's been married longer than ten years. No one can beat Patricia Gaffney at writing moving and deeply revealing women's fiction that doesn't leave you racing to take an antidepressant when you're done.”

--Susan Elizabeth Phillips, author of Natural Born Charmer

“Patricia Gaffney is a powerful, original voice in women’s fiction. Funny, poignant, and true-to-life, Mad Dash is an absolute delight from start to finish. From the moment you begin the crazy journey that is Dash’s midlife crisis, you’ll see yourself, your friends, and your own family. Don’t miss this wonderful novel about one woman’s chaotic trip into the dark, secret terrain of her own heart.”
–Kristin Hannah, author of The Things We Do for Love

“Mad Dash is a lovely, lovely novel. It is funny, true, wise, and inspiring, and I could not have enjoyed it more.”

--Elizabeth Buchan, author of Revenge of the Middle-Aged Woman

Mad Dash is beautiful, witty, and wise; an intensely honest and compelling story of a couple in crisis where no one is to blame and everyone is. Gaffney’s portrait of a marriage is both great storytelling and exquisite writing--a wonderful book. Mad Dash is dazzling.”

--Jennifer Crusie, author of Manhunting

From the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307382115
  • Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/7/2007
  • Pages: 355
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

New York Times bestselling author Patricia Gaffney lives in southern Pennsylvania with her husband.
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Read an Excerpt

Mad Dash

A Novel
By Patricia Gaffney

Shaye Areheart Books

Copyright © 2007 Patricia Gaffney
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780307382115

Chapter one

The puppy and I trip over each other coming through the door, just as the phone stops ringing. I go down hard, but Andrew’s voice on the machine loosens something that was tight inside me, a dry sponge in water.

“Hi, babe,” I say, full of relief, as if he can hear me. Sprawled on the plank floor, craning away from the puppy’s exuberant tongue kisses, I rub my sore knee and listen to my husband say, “Dash? Hello, are you there?”

I start to get up, but his tone changes. “I know you’re there.” He’s annoyed, so I stay where I am. Andrew is mad at me? I have really whacked my knee, and now I’m seeing it as his fault.

“Dash, answer the phone, please.” He sighs. What a martyr. Oh, what he has to put up with.

“We said we’d talk this evening,” he reminds me. I can hear classical music in the background; I picture him in his big chair in the living room, feet up on the ottoman, enjoying his record collection without interruptions. He must be having a ball without me. “Dash, would you please pick up the phone?”

Again I start to get up, but he heaves another piteous sigh and I change my mind. “Verywell,” he says. Who says “very well”? No one but Andrew. He says “indeed,” too, and “quite right,” and “em” instead of “um.” You’d think he was English.

“Very well, call me back, that is if you can find the time.” His sarcasm is usually subtler. “But I might go to bed early,” he warns. “I didn’t sleep at all well last night.”

I wait through a small pause, wondering if he misses me. Probably, but he won’t say it. Oh, I ought to get off the floor and pick up the phone, talk, resolve things. But I stay where I am, holding the puppy’s warm, panting sides. Sometimes prolonging even bad things, painful things, is better than getting them all nice and neat and settled. That's what Andrew would like, for us to get this silliness behind us, tidy it up like a messy room. Put everything back exactly where it was before.

“Also,” he goes on, “I’ve got a raging headache, so maybe you shouldn’t call. It came on all at once, I didn’t take a pill in time.” Now I can hear it, that pinch in his tone that means he’s squinting, holding himself stiffly to ward off his migraine. If he even has one. Andrew is a hypochondriac, but I suppose an imagined headache is just as painful as a real one. A raging headache—how dramatic, like a nineteenth-century heroine. If I were there with him I’d be sympathetic, though. I’d rub his neck, make him a cup of tea. Funny how bitchiness comes a lot easier when you’re seventy-five miles away.

“Mrs. Melman called,” he says. “I don’t know what you want me to tell her. Tell anybody, so I didn’t say anything. Just that you weren’t here.”

I don’t know what to tell anybody either, even Mrs. Melman, who lives next door. Maureen knows, but no one else. If this is a separation, it isn’t real yet. I don’t know what it is, and I ought to. I started it.

“I’m not going to keep talking to this damn machine. I’m hanging up.” Andrew’s dignity means everything to him. “They’re calling for snow here, so who knows what it’ll do down there. So . . . you be careful,” he says gruffly, and hangs up.

Now I’m bereft. There’s no pleasing me; I could have eight husbands, or none, and I’d still have this edgy, empty feeling. It’s not even depression, which I imagine is at least relaxing. This is more like an illness, one that’s not serious enough to warrant any sympathy. Just a long, long stretch of feeling lousy.

It started to snow down here about an hour ago. I’m surprised Andrew didn’t know that, since the Weather Channel is one of the three he watches; the other two are PBS and the History Channel—naturally; he’s a history professor. The snow is what made us fall over each other in the doorway, the puppy and me. My hiking boots left wet blotches on the kitchen floor, melting snow seeping into the cracks between the old pine boards. First snow of the season. What if I were snowed in for Christmas, the unspoken date by which Andrew and I are supposed to reconcile? Snowed in at our cabin all by myself; alone at Christmas for the first time in twenty years. The thought makes me shiver. Not with dread. An illicit thrill, like shoplifting must be, or committing a victimless crime.

The dog waddles over to her bowl, toenails clicking, pudgy belly bulging from side to side. I sigh and pick myself up, go outside to retrieve the armload of wood I dropped in my haste to answer the phone. Mr. Bender, the man who does odd jobs and out-of-season maintenance on our cabin, has taken to stacking the wood he brings all the way out by the shed. He’s such a surly old coot, I think he does it on purpose, so I’ll have to walk farther.

We bought the cabin three years ago, but it might as well be three days as far as Mr. Bender is concerned. Or thirty years—we’d still be “the new people,” rich Washingtonians spoiling the pristine Virginia countryside with our traffic and pollution, our estate developments eating up the beautiful old farms. Never mind that Andrew and I are anything but rich—in fact, we’re poor now that Chloe’s in college—never mind our cabin’s been here since the forties and we have personally saved it from rotting into the mossy ground with a lot of improvements we couldn’t afford. We’re still “the new people” to Mr. Bender, and still not welcome.

I’ve become an expert at keeping the fire in the woodstove going, formerly Andrew’s job. The stove is tiny, but so is the kitchen; if I close the door to the living room it’s warm as a kiln in here. I sprawl in my mother’s old padded rocker with her shawl around my shoulders and my feet on one of the couch pillows I use for a footstool. I love the quiet, just the hiss of the stove and the tick and slide of snow against the window. The dog, asleep beside me on the rug. Not chewing it for a change.

I wonder if I would be lonely without her. I never used to come down to the cabin without Andrew, I thought I’d be scared by myself. But I’m not, and she’s certainly no watchdog. I was thinking of naming her Sock, because she has one white paw. Dogs are supposed to be especially sensitive to the K sound, I’ve heard. Is that funny, “Sock” instead of “Socks”? I like funny names for pets. Andrew would come up with something funny. When Chloe was little, he’d make her laugh by christening her dolls and stuffed animals Uriah or Orville, Saffron, Primavera.

But, of course, consulting Andrew is not a possibility in this case. The way we got the puppy, or rather what happened afterward, pretty much squashes that option.

We were coming home from the history department trimester break party. Exams had ended the day before, vacation was starting, so everybody was in a good mood and drank too much. Everyone but me, anyway; I probably drank too much, but I was in a bad mood.

But I’ve been in a bad mood since last summer, when my mother died. Then Chloe went off to college and, I don’t know, I can’t seem to find my footing, my old self. I go around like a ghost, no bones, no blood; I feel like I barely cast a shadow. The doctor thinks I might be hitting menopause early. Trauma can do that, she said.

Something was wrong with me that night—I mean, obviously; I walked out on my husband, apparently over a dog. The only warning I had, and only in retrospect, was that every time I looked at Andrew—who stood almost the whole night in Richard Weldon’s dim foyer with his back to the wall, as far from the thick of things as he could possibly get without going outside—it was as if his outline had blurred or faded and I were seeing him in duplicate, two Andrews slightly overlapping. It wasn’t the rum punch, either, because everything else was in perfect focus. It was Andrew.

He had on his uniform: khaki trousers, blue Oxford shirt, tweed jacket. And, touchingly, the paisley tie I gave him years ago, back when I had hopes of varying the uniform. Naive me, I used to buy clothes for him. He’d get a pained expression while he’d praise my selections—sweaters, slacks, shirts in colors besides blue—and then he’d never wear them. I wonder what his students make of the uniform, I wonder if he’s the butt of jokes—he’d hate that. Probably not, though. His students always love him.

He stood in the foyer with his hands in his pockets, head back, looking down his long nose at Tim Meese, his best friend, his fellow escape artist. The two oldest men in the department, not counting ancient Dr. Cleveland, and neither one a full professor. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

I always add that, like making a cross against vampires. So I don’t sound so much like an ambitious, political, calculating faculty wife.

“Oh, hello, Dash,” I heard from behind me. “What an amusing cape. Where’s Andrew?”

Elizabeth O’Neal, I knew without turning around. She has a low, staccato, order-giving voice that pauses in unpredictable places; if you close your eyes, you’d swear she was Captain Kirk. She slouches; she always wears black; she’s not pretty in the least, not to me, but her students are fascinated by her. If the college rumor mill is right, and so often it isn’t, she’s having an affair with Richard Weldon. Poor Allison, his indecently young wife, who used to be one of his students. I guess you reap what you sow.

“Elizabeth, nice to see you,” I said. “Andrew? He’s over there.”

“Oh, mmm,” she said in a different voice, not Captain Kirk’s at all, and I looked more closely at my husband to see what she was seeing. He’s handsome, certainly to me, but he’s got the kind of face that doesn’t exactly bowl you over with admiration, not at first when you might be distracted by his thick glasses, or put off by his everyday expression of worried melancholy. And he’s tall, but you don’t notice right off because of his sort of hollow-chested, self-deprecating stoop. I can see him growing old like Mr. Chips, thin and tweedy and dignified, and never losing his hair.

Before slouching off toward the foyer, Elizabeth made dutiful chitchat about her plans for the break—Jamaica with some guy—and asked me about mine and Andrew’s. “Oh, we’re staying home,” I said carelessly, “keeping it quiet this year. Chloe’s school is on a different semester system, so . . .” I’d only just found out, so the wound was fresh: Chloe wasn’t coming home for the Christmas holidays. She was going skiing in Vermont with one roommate, then visiting the other in Connecticut over New Year’s, even though it’s her freshman year and we haven’t seen her since Thanksgiving. She doesn’t even ski.

I think that’s when it started. My unwinding. Elizabeth, I presume unwittingly, put her bony finger on the most recent sore spot in my heart. But there was an older, tenderer one right under it, and by picking at the top one she pierced the tissue-thin scab over the other. Fresh blood.

The sandwich generation: I’m so tired of that expression. In the last nine months, both halves of my sandwich have been pried off and eaten. I’m the soft, squishy center, exposed, unprotected. Unsafe, that’s the word. All I have now is Andrew to protect me.

“Didn’t you see me?” I asked him on the way home, holding my hands closer to the heater for warmth. “I gave you the signal.” Everything about him annoyed me. That should have set off another warning bell, but I only remember clenching my jaw over the obsessively careful way he drove, the highbrow music station he always has to have on the radio, his utter obliviousness to my mood. The hypochondriacal loop he kept going around in about tonight’s spiced shrimp’s probable effect on his gastrointestinal system, the migraine he wouldn’t be at all surprised to wake up with tomorrow from all those flash pictures Richard’s wife wouldn’t stop taking—

“But didn’t you see me? You looked right at me, you couldn’t have missed it.” I’m not as practiced at giving the “Let’s go” signal as Andrew, for the simple reason that he always wants to go home before I do. Still, it’s not brain surgery: You raise your eyebrows and rub your left wrist, careful not to touch or look at your watch, which would give it away.

“I thought you were having a good time,” he said. There was no traffic, but he put the turn signal on to change lanes. That annoyed me, too. “You were dancing with Richard.”

“No, I wasn’t, Richard was dancing with me. Oh, God.” I slumped, overcome with exhaustion. Everything was the same, the Weldons’ holiday party, Mason-Dixon College, the ancient flirtations, the politics, the people. Nothing changed except how old we were all getting. How many more faculty parties would I have to go to in my lifetime—fifty? A hundred? I didn’t even have my friend Maureen to commiserate with anymore, not since she split up with her husband. She says that’s the only good thing about her divorce—she never has to go with Phil to another damn faculty party.

“Did you hear Richard’s giving up the chairmanship?” Andrew asked me, and I said of course I knew, it was the hot subtext all evening. You couldn’t be there and not know (I didn’t say) unless you stayed in the foyer all night and only talked to one or two of your closest friends.

“You never even moved,” I complained. “It was like your shoulder was glued to the wall. Couldn’t you just . . . can’t you ever . . .”

I didn’t finish, just sighed again and stared out the window, and I think that’s a point for me. At least I don’t nag. I used to consider Andrew’s complete indifference to office politics admirable, a mark of his honesty and integrity, but I don’t anymore. When you think about it, it’s kind of selfish. His academic career is . . . how best to put it . . . languishing, but he would rather teach class in a kilt than do anything so undignified as network, so who has to do it? Me. I have to dance with drunken department heads and pretend to like it. Our daughter isn’t putting herself through her expensive college.

“Let’s go to the cabin for the weekend.”

He finally looked over at me. “The cabin?”


Excerpted from Mad Dash by Patricia Gaffney Copyright © 2007 by Patricia Gaffney. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Reading Group Guide

1. Everyone has heard the old axiom “Opposites attract.” Do they? And can they last? Dash and Andrew don’t have much in common. What attracts them to each other initially? What keeps them together in the long term? How important are shared hobbies and interests to a relationship?

2. Dash’s mother passes away just months before Chloe, her only child, leaves home for college. How big a factor do these events play in Dash’s decision to leave Andrew? What does it mean to be a member of the “Sandwich Generation”?

3. Both Dash and Andrew claim to be annoyed by the other’s foibles. What do you find annoying about Dash? About Andrew? What do you find endearing about each of them? Who would you rather be in a long-term relationship with, gender notwithstanding? Why do the quirks we love at first turn into pet peeves over time?

4. The puppy Dash finds on her front porch becomes the catalyst for leaving Andrew. What does the puppy represent to Dash? What does it represent to Andrew?

5. Andrew tried to break things off with Dash after their first night together–why?

6. Like many people in the throes of a midlife crisis, Dash wants to “find herself.” What does this mean? Is it even possible? Does Dash manage to do it during her separation from Andrew?

7. Why is Andrew so reluctant to advance at work? How does his relationship with his father contribute to this? How does Andrew get over this problem?

8. Cottie and Shevlin Bender are happy after years of marriage–why? How are they different from the other couples in Mad Dash? What lessons can be learned from their successfulmarriage?

9. While living in Virginia, Dash begins to spend time with the Benders’ son-in-law, a local farmer named Owen. Why is Dash attracted to him? Do you think she has more in common with Owen or with Andrew?

10. Dash’s friend Maureen is newly divorced after a long marriage. How is her experience of life after marriage different than Dash’s? What do you think of her attitudes about love and marriage?

11. On page 000, Maureen says that only married people can appreciate the allure of loneliness. Why is the thought of being alone attractive to married people? Can you relate to that sentiment? Dash thinks women experience this more than men. What do you think? Is this experience the same regardless of gender?

12. Andrew says that Dash was a good daughter, but Dash harbors a lot of guilt about her mother. Why? Is it warranted? Discuss Dash’s actions regarding her mother’s thwarted suitor, Mr. Dreessen. What effects do motherhood and her own child’s flight from the nest have on Dash’s feelings about this? Why does this guilt make it harder for Dash to heal after her mother’s death?

13. Her flight to the cabin makes the third time Dash has left Andrew. What happened the other two times? Why did she come back in the past? What’s different now? What does this tendency say about her?

14. Dash believes she will get a lot out of having a whole week to herself at the cabin. Do you think she gets what she wants out of her week of solitude? Would you enjoy having a week all to yourself? What would you do with the time?

15. During their separation, both Dash and Andrew come very close to committing adultery but don’t go through with it. Why? What does Dash learn from Owen? What does Andrew learn from Elizabeth?

16. Dash and Andrew come close to making up many times before they actually do. What keeps them from getting back together? Why do they reunite when they finally do?

17. Since she’s already decided to go home, how important is Andrew’s arrival at the cabin? How is Andrew’s punch significant to Dash, especially in light of her advice to Owen regarding his estranged wife?

18. Once they’ve reconciled, Dash admits to herself that she never really planned to stay separated from Andrew. In light of this, do you think the separation was a good thing? For Dash? For Andrew? For them as a couple? What do you think its long-term effects might be?

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Don't bother

    I really tried to like this book, but I finally gave up and closed the cover after 3 days of forcing myself to read it. I got about 1/2 way through it and realized that I was never going to be interested in any of the characters and what they did. I didn't care how the book ended. This one is getting donated to the local thrift shop and maybe someone else will find something to like about it. I just can't.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 30, 2009

    A Fun Read

    Anyone who has had a rocky romance will enjoy this book. Even if you haven't and are just in a relationship you will appreciate the story. Sometimes you just have to look out for number one and this does that without ragging on the offending character. Both parties have their porblems and they have an unusual way of resolving them. Enjoy the ride!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 30, 2011


    Gaffney writes her characters well and presents a believable story of a marriage in distress. Enjoyed thhe whole story much more than I had anticipated, and I look forward to sharing it with others. It would make for good conversation among friends.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2009


    Light and entertaining, especially if you are 45-50 and thinking how did I get here?

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  • Posted February 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer


    Decisions, decisions,'s full of them, isn't it? Sometimes we live to regret them at other times we're thankful for powers that help us choose which is best. Dash Bateman finds herself in a quandary, an unhappy one. Married for two decades to Andrew she now finds him bothersome. In fact, almost everything he does bothers her. Isn't it ridiculous that he needs a glass of warm milk at bedtime or that he forces her to go to faculty parties that he obviously doesn't enjoy? Their daughter has recently gone to college, and she lost her mother a short while ago. Now, it seems that's all that's left for her is Andrew and she doesn't believe that's near enough. Dash is convinced there must be more in life for her than what she has, but where is it or who is it? She leaves, retreats to their summer cabin. It comes as no surprise that recently Andrew hasn't found much joy in their relationship either. He's a college professor who likes quiet, and order in his life. He certainly didn't want the abandoned puppy they found on their doorstep! He thinks with Dash gone he can concentrate on his work and enjoy a peaceful existence.....for a change. Gaffney tells her story in alternate points of view as we learn more about both Dash and Andrew and, as it evolves, they learn more about themselves and each other. How strong are love's ties? What brought them together 20 years ago? It would seem almost logical that in an almost two character story an audio version would have a male and a female voice. This is not the case, and actress Laural Merlington does a splendid job of reflecting both personalities, their hopes and their dreams. Many will remember her for vivid narrations of Acts of Malice, Back On Blossom Street, Beautiful Dreamer, etc. Merlington is an experienced performer who always delivers her best in a voice both supple and smooth. - Gail Cooke

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer


    Two decades together prove opposites attract and stay attracted. Impetuous photographer Dash Bateman thinks her spouse Mason-Dixon History professor Andrew is a prude prim and proper Andrew believes his wife is reckless. Yet they remain together raising a child in love.---------------- However, when Dash¿s mom dies at the same time their daughter leaves for college, she questions her life as she believes Andrew does not understand her anymore assuming he once did. She insists it is not grief or an empty nest or the dog it is much greater as she wonders is that all there is. She leaves Andrew at their house and stays at their isolated cabin to think about living separate lives. Andrew sort of moves on flirting with a professor and coveting the department chair Dash sort of moves back flirting with replacement mother, daughter and lover.------------------ Rotating perspectives between the lead married couple allows the audience to see how two people interpret differently the same incident (the real theory of relativity). Readers will want to know whether the Batemans overcome their frustrations with one another and their overall respective disappointments in life. Although the ending is over the rainbow, Patricia Gaffney provides a wonderful look at middle age relationships when the sandwich generation obtains freedom (through death and college) for the first time in almost twenty years.------------ Harriet Klausner

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    Posted February 1, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2011

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews

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