Second Spring: A Love Story (O'Malley Family Series)by Andrew M. Greeley
Father Andrew M. Greeley, one of America's best-loved and most widely read novelists, has delighted readers with his ongoing chronicles of the crazy O'Malleys, a rambunctious but resourceful Irish-American family caught up in the sweep of modern American history. The previous novels in the sagaA Midwinter's Tale, Younger than Springtime, A Christmas Wedding,<… See more details below
Father Andrew M. Greeley, one of America's best-loved and most widely read novelists, has delighted readers with his ongoing chronicles of the crazy O'Malleys, a rambunctious but resourceful Irish-American family caught up in the sweep of modern American history. The previous novels in the sagaA Midwinter's Tale, Younger than Springtime, A Christmas Wedding, and September Songhave taken the O'Malleys of Chicago from the aftermath of World War II through the tumultuous upheavals of the sixties. Now, in Second Spring, Charles "Chucky" O'Malley and his growing clan face the promise and pitfalls of the late seventies.
It's 1978 and the whole country, exhausted from the twin traumas of Vietnam and Watergate, seems to be suffering from a massive hangover. Chucky O'Malley knows how the country feels; approaching fifty, he finds himself in the grip of a debilitating midlife crisis. Although he has much to be thankful for, including a loving wife and a thriving career as a professional photographer, he does not feel like a success. He hasn't lost his faith, exactly, but he does feel disillusioned and depressed. As he travels the world, from the Vatican, where a new pope is to be selected, to Jimmy Carter's White House, where an overwhelmed president struggles to find a cure for his nation's malaise, Chucky searches for a way to renew his weary spirit.
Fortunately, he doesn't have to face this challenge alone. With the loving support of his family, and especially his irrepressible and adoring wife, Rosemarie, he just might rediscover his lost hope and optimism in time for a Second Spring. . . .
Author Biography: Father Andrew M. Greeley, a Catholic priest and sociologist, is an Honorary Senior Fellow at the University of Ireland in Dublin. He divides his time between teaching at the University of Chicago and the University of Arizona at Tucson.
"A truly well-crafted read. The O’Malleys are a wonderful Irish family, full of good humor and love, against the backdrop of a very trying era in American history." Romantic Times on September Song
Read an Excerpt
"You might," the naked woman said to me, "make model airplanes."
"Ah," I said, as I caressed her firm, sweaty belly, an essential of afterplay as I had learned long ago.
"You always wanted to make them when you were a kid."
The full moon illumined the dome of St. Peter's in the distance and bathed us in its glow, as though it were doing us a favor. Over there the cardinals were doubtless spending a restless night in the uncomfortable beds in their stuffy rooms. None of them had a bedmate like Rosemarie with whom to play, worse luck for them and for the Church.
"You said…Don't stop, Chucky Ducky, I like that…You said that you were too poor to buy the kits."
"I did not!" I insisted, as I kissed her tenderly.
"You did." She sighed. "You don't have to stop that either."
My lips roamed her flesh, not demanding now, but reassuring, praising, celebrating.
"I did not!"
There had been a time, long years ago, when I would have tried a second romp of lovemaking in a situation like the present one.
"Or you could take up collecting sports cards. You told all of us that you couldn't afford that either."
"I never said that!"
"You did too!" She giggled as I tickled her.
"I guess I'm in my midlife identity crisis," I admitted.
"You can't be, Chucky Ducky darling." She snuggled close to me. "You haven't got beyond your late adolescent identity crisis."
One of the valiant Rosemarie's favorite themes was that I was still a charming little boy, like the little redhead in the stories she wrote.
"Mind you," she whispered, "I like you as an adolescent boy."
"Only an adolescent boy would be so nicely obsessed with every part of a woman's anatomy."
That would be a line in her next story. I wondered how the New Yorker would handle the spectacular lovemaking that preceded the line.
"A man could become impotent at the possibility that his bedtime amusements would become public knowledge."
"Ha!…I don't know about you, Chucky Ducky, but I'm going to sleep now."
She pillowed her head on my stomach.
"Chucky love," she sighed, now well across the border into the land of Nod, "you're wonderful. We really defied death this time, didn't we?"
That would be in the story too. I had become a character in a series of New Yorker storiesa little red-haired punk as an occasional satyr.
Rosemarie Helen Clancy O'Malley had found her midlife identity as a writer. Her poor husband had found his identity as a character in fiction. On that happy note I reprised in my imagination some of the more pleasurable moments of our romp and sank into peace and satisfied sleep.
Copyright © 2003 by Andrew M. Greeley Enterprises, Inc.
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