Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Fin & Lady; Cathleen Schine

2013 - Macmillian Audio

Fin & Lady was a different kind of story and such a treat for me.  The story begins with the funeral of Fin Hadley's mother in the 1960s, when he was just 8 years old.  Fin's father had already passed away, and his "half-sister" Lady, who he had met just once before has been appointed his legal guardian. When Fin learned he had a "half-sister" he was about 5 year-old, and he thought that the phrase, "half-sister" sounded a bit frightening or at least confusing. He tried to visualize what a "half-sister" might look like as he and his parents left home for Capri to find Lady and to bring her home.

Lady Hadley, had always been a bit of a rebel. At 24, she is now independently wealthy. She's a free spirit who loves men (has 3-suitors and is still looking), and she enjoys her glamorous lifestyle.  At first glance, Lady seems like an ill-suited guardian for a young boy like Fin, but their relationship is special. Fin adores Lady even though he is puzzled by much of what he witnesses. Lady introduces Fin to culture, an appreciation for books, and enrolls him in a private school in the Village, a school with non traditional teaching methods. Together they enjoy Broadway musicals and other adventures that only a city like New York could offer Fin. Lady often treats Fin as an adult far too often, like when she suggests he help her select a suitable husband to marry before she turns 25.

Having been about Fin's age at the time this story took place, made it this novel all the more enjoyable for me. I loved flashing back to the life changing events of that era: the Vietnam War, the civil rights movement, hippie movement, and the positive changes that were beginning to happen for women. The audiobook reader, Anne Twomey, did an excellent job making for a wonderful listening experience. Fin & Lady is not a story with a lot of action, but it is a story that surprised me. Initially, it appeared that the story was being told by Fin looking back, but boy was I in for a surprise.

The author did a great job creating a believable, touching story that was infused with much humor and tenderness.  I loved Fin, and the author made sure his every interaction with Lady was memorable for the reader.

Try it. - 4.5/5 stars

(library audiobook)

11 comments:

  1. I bet I would love that time period too.

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  2. I agree... I love the 60's too, albeit a bit too young to grasp the main events. But this story sounds very interesting and a delight to listen to. I'll keep that in mind.

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  3. Wow. 4.5 stars is a lot. I love the book cover and I'm all for books without too much action but a lot of substance.

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  4. That sounds really, really interesting!

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  5. Oh, I can't wait to read this one! Love stories set in NY...and in that time period. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. I've had this one on my list from the first moment I heard about it. I'm so glad that you enjoyed it, Diane.

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  7. So happy to hear you liked this so much. I'm moving this closer to the top of my audio wish list! I really enjoyed listening to her earlier novel, The Three Weissmans of Westport.

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  8. I've read some of Cathleen Shine's other books and liked them but this one sounds especially good. It sounds as if Lady is a good age for relating to Fin most of the time although occasionally it sounds as if she forgets he's just a child. I'm just glad he has someone to care for him when his mom dies.
    Great review, Diane, Thank you!

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  9. I liked these characters and the time period as well.

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  10. I've been looking forward to this one for a long time & have it on my Nook. So glad you enjoyed it so much!

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