Sailing My Shoe to Timbuktu
A Woman's Adventurous Search for Family, Spirit, and LoveeBook - 2003
In this fiercely candid and moving book, novelist Joyce Thompson recounts a difficult yet transforming period in her life. In words that will ring true to anyone in the "sandwich" generation, Thompson tells the story of her troubled marriage ending, her adjustment to single motherhood, finding new love, turning fifty, dealing with sick and dying parents, and somehow discovering a spiritual home in an ancient, earth-centered tradition.
Along the way, she comes to terms with the blessings and specters of her own dysfunctional family. This includes her father, a distinguished judge and chronic alcoholic, and her tough, smart mother, a pioneering woman lawyer, who is slowly succumbing to Alzheimer's and whom Thompson helps to die gracefully, despite many traumatic and even ridiculous moments. But with Thompson's lyrical, personal, and evocative writing, she transforms what could have been a soap opera into a rich, moving, and funny story, full of hope.
Thompson's novels are about understanding the human condition, and it's no surprise she focuses that gift on her own life and the lives of her family. Elegant, wise, and witty, Sailing My Shoe to Timbuktu, pulls no punches and is delightfully and compulsively readable.