Freefall: A Divine Comedy

Lily Iona
MacKenzie
Genre:
Contemporary

MAGICAL REALISM:  Tillie, Daddy, Sibyl, and Moll—they called themselves the Muskrateers—were young and crazy women with radical opinions and ideas—forty years ago. Now, with the big 6-0 looming on their horizons, they decide on a reunion. It starts out in Whistler, B.C., at Sibyl’s quirky cabin. At first, the women hardly recognize each other. When Sibyl produces an old film of their younger years, the four women watch their younger selves . . . and remember. Their re-bonding is complete after an encounter with a huge grizzly bear in the woods, when they join forces and survive.

The Muskrateers decide to continue their reunion in Venice, where Sibyl owns a flat. They meet in the “floating city” and begin an adventure that gets crazier by the minute. The only one with an agenda is Tillie, an installation artist who has dreams of exhibiting her talents and gaining fame. That’s before a cat, a pigeon, a snake, termites, and a not-quite-celibate priest get involved!

This novel is titled after Dante’s epic poem, which describes his trip through hell to reach paradise—an apt comparison to the journey these women make in transitioning to their senior years. Each woman must face her biggest obstacles and fears, struggling to find ways to resolve her inner demons. Cleverly written with golden nuggets of phrase, the author has painted some very serious subjects—from artistic aspirations to loneliness to cancer—with a lighthearted brush, tempering the trip through hell with delightful humor. Prepare for an entertaining and often hilarious ride!

FS Brown