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BREAD FOR THE TABLE
Tara Botel Doherty
Bread for the Table relates a single day in the life of Sage a 30-year-old aspiring jewelry designer working as a waitress in a pseudo New York deli in Los Angeles. A postcard from her mother triggers a series of flashbacks, which bring Sage's life into focus.
She remembers her protector – dear older sister, Rose of Sharon and her untimely death; her remote father, whose only communication was reading passages from novels written by John Steinbeck; her grandmother, the only consistent figure in Sage's life; and her mother.
The last time Sage and her mother shared an intimate moment was stirring a pot of soup shortly after Rose of Sharon's death. Her mother's last instructions before she went to buy bread to complement the soup were to keep stirring the soup so it wouldn't burn. Dutifully Sage stirred, but her mother never returned. She was five years old. Now she has received a postcard from a woman she hasn't seen in twenty-five years. AMAZON REVIEW LINK
This is one of those books that will have you thinking and thinking hard. It is a complex journey between today and yesterday. It may not make complete sense until you get near the end. Just because a character may not appear strong doesn't mean that is true. Strength comes in many forms. The story moves rather slowly to begin with as a young woman is in bed with her boyfriend and her puppy. The author gives us bits and pieces of her life, her past that she has tried so very hard to put just there, in the past. Things are complicated for the young female. She needs her boyfriend to coddle her, baby her. But he not only babies her, he often times is mean and controlling. She needs this. Why? She is willing to take the abuse in order to get the attention. It stems from her mother who left her when she was very young. So after you understand her past, you can understand her needing this treatment from her boyfriend. As memories come forth, we learn the sad realization of that day when her mother went for bread and never returned. That is bound to place pain and hurt and emotional scars on anyone, let alone a child. As she grows up she is left constantly with the thought of her mother leaving and never returning. She is constantly wondering is she is worth anything, if anyone will or can love her, what is wrong with me. This and much more. It destroys her to the point where she needs and holds on strongly to anyone who gives her attention. She craves that and no wonder. It tears at your heart strings and makes you sad. It makes you wonder, what is wrong with people. This does happen in reality. We are taken a bit into the life of her father, who she had a good relationship with. A different time and a different memory. But she was also left by her father, in a different way. He eventually emmersed himself totally into his literature. But that isn't all Sage has lost. A sister that died early on. This may have been the definition of a dysfunctional family. The seriousness of a dysfunctional family is that everyone connected in any way, is harmed in some way. The author dealt with a serious matter in a very delicate way. Well written and thought provoking. Sage settles, Sage gives up her dreams of being a jewelry designer, Sage is just trying to survive. So hence, the book title, BREAD FOR THE TABLE, where it all began, when Sage's mother left to get bread and didn't return. You will smile at times but that smile may turn to sadness. Your heart may warm and then your heart may turn a bit cold. This is reality. This is what some go through. It hurts, it's sad, it's LIFE. The author wrote an emotional filled book that doesn't sugar coat but present a scenario that could be you or someone your know.
This review is my opinion and was no way influenced by anyone.
I would give this book 5 STARS.
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TARA BOTEL DOHERTY was born in Los Angeles. She was raised by her grandmother and mother blocks away from famed Hollywood Boulevard. It was a Bohemian upbringing filled with art, dance, and guitar lessons and movie sets where her father worked as a lighting technician. This environment helped generate her love of the arts, especially books and writing.
She wrote her first book in the first grade. Educated in both public and parochial schools where the fundamentals of perseverance and patience were drilled into her, Tara understood the work ethic. She spends her days and nights teaching English in the San Fernando Valley.
Now residing up in the Santa Clarita Valley, aka the ‘Rita with her husband and daughter, she writes regularly about her adventures in Hollywood.
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