SECURING HAPPINESS is farfrom a given, and the pathway to it often winding and vulnerable to ambush.Pathways delves into the lives of six ordinary New Yorkers as diverse as thecity itself. While unknown to one another, they all share a sense of loss and-intentionallyor not-embark on a journey to find elusive contentment. Each protagonist alsoshares a connection to historic Madison Square Park, the six-acre sanctuarylocated in Manhattan's Flatiron district. The park and New York are morethan locations in Pathways. They are key characters, revealed in depth.
Within two novellas andfour short stories, readers will meet and become engaged with Michael - a youngman obsessed with Melinda, an older woman; Steven - a television executive andvictim of the Great Recession; Gina - a nurse in an Alzheimer's unit withattachment issues; Terry - a former New York Yankee pitcher who could have beena Hall of Famer; Jimmy - a criminal lawyer who visits Jake, his estranged dyingfather and retired NYPD detective; and Chella - a translator who arrives in NewYork from Colombia to hide from the Cali Cartel and begin a new life.
These disparate New Yorkers suffer from emotional wounds inflicted bypast events. While attempting to survive-in perhaps the world's mostchallenging city-they are confronted by a choice: to remain in a damaged stateor to turn the corner and move on. Powerful forces, including colorfulsecondary characters, influence their decisions and are at the heart of each journey.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Jeff Lawenda is an old college friend, so I am not unbiased. Having just finished reading his recently published, engrossing book, PATHWAYS: NOVELLAS AND STORIES OF NEW YORK I felt compelled to write and urge you all to read it. how deeply I was touched by this book. Each tale was emotional rich, and will introduce you to a cast of interesting, believalbe characters, many of whose issues will intersect with yours (as they did mine) and whose lives and dilemmas demonstrate how lifelong dynamics- individual and family, haunt, shape and limit all of us. The characters in his stories convey a persistent message: that although people are resilient, life is filled with difficulties, obstacles and grief, and all stories do not have happy endings. ThIs welcome touch of realism —that all stories do not have happy endings— is one of his greatest gifts. Many pieces of different stories spoke directly to me about issues I think about a lot: what it is that gives life meaning, what kindles love and more important, what qualities sustain and keep love alive, and how the resilience of the human spirit often surfaces in surprising ways. The likable and believable characters in his stories remind us that the key to a vibrant life involves the ability to do two things simultaneously: mourn our losses and tap into our innate grit and access our ability to start over, and over, and over. Judith Ruskay Rabinor, Ph.D. Psychologist, Psychotherapist, Author