The death of Colin Madsen's beloved father brings Colin home to the small town of Concord, Massachusetts, facing a decision to keep or sell the family funeral home. Colin himself has no interest in the business, but he wants to make sure his father's legacy is continued. As Colin struggles with the decision, he reconnects with Ava, his childhood neighbor and friend. Colin and Ava seem like an ideal match, but when Ava becomes unemployed and takes a corporate job in funeral home acquisitions, the seemingly innocent move sets off a chain reaction of problems that threaten their relationship and the existence of the funeral home Colin wants to protect. BRENT ELIOT PARKER is also the author of the sports murder mystery Breakdown at Clear River, nominated for a Weatherford Award in Outstanding Fiction by the Appalachian Studies Association in 2012. His short fiction has appeared in Speck Literary Journal, Apex Books, Crack the Spine Literary Journal and others. Eliot earned his M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Eastern Kentucky University and currently teaches writing and literature at Mountwest Community and Technical College in Huntington, West Virginia.
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Making Arrangements based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Reviewed by Karen Pirnot for Readers' Favorite Making Arrangements by Brent Eliot Parker gives the reader an in-depth peek into the world of a family mortuary business. When his father died, Colin was working in Boston, unwilling to take over the business. But, when Colin returns to sell the funeral home, he gets swept up in the general operations and the fragile condition of the business. Fully intending to sell the funeral home, Colin begins to assume responsibility while gradually acquainting himself with the prominence of his father's reputation as a compassionate and understanding funeral director. Colin puts his full trust in Amos, a man who has basically run the funeral home since the death of Colin's father, Luke. Amos is a shrewd and competent man who hopes to hook Colin into staying. When a love interest enters the picture in the form of Ava, Colin's life gets truly complicated. When Ava's new line of work threatens to bury the family business, Colin must then make choices he would prefer to avoid. I liked the honest and down-to-earth characters and Ava was an interesting woman who seemed to understand the diverse needs of her new love, Colin. At times, I became frustrated with Colin's inability to get his act together but basically, the story was interesting and Colin was eventually able to get his ducks in a row. Making Arrangements may be a good book for those thinking about future arrangements for loved ones. Basic procedures were explained in the story line such that readers might acquire a better understanding of the mortuary business in general. Author Parker has a nice, soft way of presenting his story and most readers will feel the book is well worth the read.