Life is a puzzle; we are the clues, and God is the answer.
A young woman who just attempted to end her life… her father who did not only have time for his family, but actually turned his back on them in favor of his Hollywood career and a younger woman… her Nana (grandmother) who would not give up on her.
These are the three main characters in Jan Goldtein’s debut novel, All that Matters, a story of hope and redemption.….
.Synopsis Jennifer Stempler felt she had no more open door to turn to. The love of her life left her, her mother died in a tragic car accident, and her producer father had a new wife and a new-born girl. No, she would not be missed. So she pursued oblivion on the beach near her home in Venice, California. .
But oblivion did not come. When Jennifer opened her eyes, the first thing she saw was the “worn and wrinkled face” of her Nana, the one person she was sure would be deeply hurt if she died; and the last person she wanted to see her in her present state. .
But here she was, deeply caring and loving that soon, when Jennifer’s choices were narrowed down into three: stay in a psychiatric institution, or stay with her father (whose new wife made it known they wouldn’t have time caring for a suicidal woman), or stay with her Nana, Jennifer chose the last, against her father’s will. .
And, although at first she was oblivious to her Nana’s love, warmth, and determination, she was soon beginning to re-embrace life. But just as she was starting to trust, love, and hope again, her Nana dies. With her Nana gone, the challenge now for Jennifer was to keep going on.
Deeply moving, All that Matters shows that deep love truly can move mountains and help lost souls find their way again. It affirms that, indeed, there are doors that are always open for us; all we need to do is look. And that even those that are closed will open, if we only learn to knock..
Some good quotes from the book:.
Jennifer: “You want to see the real world, you have to shut off all distractions. It’s a matter of focus. Most people only think they see what’s going on.”.
Gabby (Jennifer’s Nana): “The world isn’t in that damn lens. You’re so busy focusing, only you’re missing everything that matters.”.
Gabby: “This rock has seen many storms. Here it stands exposed to the elements, covered with the scars of its past. But one thing that always gave me comfort in coming here—it has not crumbled. It is still standing at the water’s edge, facing the wind and the sea and whatever the future will bring.”.
Gabby: “Sometimes the gifts come wrapped in pain and the other times they hit you smack-dab in the face when you are totally unprepared.”.
Some great lines:.
“Across the street Jennifer observed a driver trying in vain to park her SUV in a space half the size she needed. It was the story of her life. She simply couldn’t wedge herself into a space in life where circumstances out of her control had left her no room.”
.“Like the pages she had yet to fill in her journal and like the white surface of the ice beneath her, Jennifer could see her future, as her Nana had said, was intriguingly blank and full of possibilities. It was waiting for her to write it, to fill the pages of her tomorrows with the life she alone could create.”
//Sherma E. Benosa; September, 2007
Also posted in my main blog: The Written Wor[l]d.