#89 Crapometer

Genre: literary fiction


When one is alone, when friends are dead and relationships with those living are ruined, are memories enough? Can one undo time?

Matty Collins, a Londoner born in America, is an elderly woman-reclusive, bitter, feisty, paranoid and destitute. She is also utterly alone. She hopes to return to New York, where she was raised. When those hopes are dashed, she decides instead to kill herself. She examines her life, notably the period in 1947 when she meets her husband, Henry, an Englishman and war hero. Matty is twenty-five then, trapped, a guardian to her brother Roland since their father's suicide three years prior. She's been hoping for change, and here, in Henry, she finds it. When she sails to Southampton to marry him, she abandons Roland, now fifteen.

The marriage and the resulting abandonment is the defining act of Matty life, a decision based on dreadful assumptions. What led Matty to the decision may lie in the traumas and secrets of her parents' deaths, of Matty own sense of abandonment, of Roland's presence and how his arrival tipped the family's balance.

Matty is the orphan girl in countless fairy tales. Yet there is no happy ending; the prince who rescues her is a philanderer, and his kingdom, Great Britain, is an empire on the wane - limping badly, its homeland bombed out, subject to dire shortages and severe rationing.

From late-twentieth-century London, to post-war Singapore, to Depression-era New York, The Happy World untangles Matty mistakes and traumas to rediscover a life untainted.

When you use a from/to construction, generally you go from the oldest or first event TO the most recent/last. Therefore: From Depressiona era New York (1930) to post war Singapore (1946-assuming we’re talking WW2) to late 20th C. London (1990).

You have flap jacket copy here. This isn’t a synopsis. What happens? How does she change? What happens to Roland? Why will we give a fig what happens to this dame?


Kelly said...

This one had me until that last paragraph. I'm thinking this is an idea with no manuscript actually written.

Anonymous said...

It may be flap jacket copy, but it's GOOD flap jacket copy. I'd open the cover and give this a shot--and I'm a tough sell.
Chris Mitchell

Miss Snark said...

I didn't mean to imply it was bad, but we're doing synopses here, not flaps.