Chasing Squirrels in Retrospect, virtual autobiographical ruminations in an e-book format by Stephanie Lawless.
The story follows a sizeable section of the life of protagonist Georgia (George), a young woman with a closely knit family as she enjoys her position in the UK as a fund raiser for the Diabetes Association while taking care of her 18-year-old incontinent dog and her ninety plus year old Aunt D. who was a “…woman with an inconsistent level of wisdom, rampant memory loss and a desire for a constant tidal wave of tea.” Georgia reflects at length on her “chubby, unhappy, romance-free adolescence” resulting in a relatively low self-esteem but, with a loving family, develops a personality inclined to a humorous approach that garners friendly relationships. The story continues with fairly lengthy, often humorous, descriptions of sections of her life where she indulges in outrageous, even dangerous, stunts to raise money for the charity among other activities. These include equally amusing attempts to find romance through the internet and speed dating, discovery of a mentally depleting unrequited true love, attempts to trace down the perpetrator of systematic fraud of Aunt D and the heartache of loss of loved family members.
Discussion: This story certainly must have offered a relatively complete and welcome catharsis for the author as she pursues her memories ranging from many humorous incidents, through those that were more poignant to others of a distressingly sad but with perhaps a bittersweet touch. The author has described each of the incidents and emotions generated quite well and has provided an interesting, often amusing, and usually most appropriate quote at the beginning of each chapter. The only feature that was a bit disconcerting to this reader was some of the verbalization that perhaps is indigenous to the author’s area of residence plus a need for a little editorial aid in sections.
4* Interestingly written virtual autography devotees will enjoy.