The Pursuit of Happiness
Read an Excerpt
I FIRST SAW her standing near my mother’s coffin. She was in her seventies – a tall, angular woman, with fine grey hair gathered in a compact bun at the back of her neck. She looked the way I hope to look if I ever make it to her birthday. She stood very erect, her spine refusing to hunch over with age. Her bone structure was flawless. Her skin had stayed smooth. Whatever wrinkles she had didn’t cleave her face. Rather, they lent it character, gravitas. She was still handsome – in a subdued, patrician way. You could tell that, once upon a recent time, men probably found her... see more
Reading Group Guide
Kate Malone stands at her mother’s coffin surrounded by the remains of her fragmented and troubled family. A mysterious woman she does not recognize stands with them, mourning quietly. Days later, this same woman demands to be in Kate’s life, explaining that she “knew her as a little girl.” Kate finally relents and allows Sara Smythe, a witty, intelligent New England woman to tell her story. Sara reveals details of her life as a young and passionate woman, being a professional writer in a man’s world after WWII, and of a secret love that bonds her to Kate’s own father, Jack Malone. What follows is a heart-wrenching, tragedy-soaked journey of a woman’s life, told to another to inspire, and teach life’s most perfect lesson, to survive at all cost, in the pursuit of happiness.
1. The novel is full of betrayals and infidelities. Both Kate Malone and Sara Smythe find these actions deplorable and are both betrayed see more