She had always known that somewhere, somehow, she had been loved. Fleeting beautiful memories, lovely images….those followed her through the years of her life. Run, Grenadine, run… haunting words that then abruptly ended with a concussion, a hospital, and endless foster home placements. And the dark images were there, too, inserting themselves into the beautiful moments, and leaving holes in her memories.
If ever anyone could have survived what Grenadine Scotch Wild had during the years in horrific foster home placements, it would have been a child who had known warmth and love at some point. Even a couple of the foster home placements contributed to her strength and her courage. And this legacy of love was also part of Grenadine’s history, even if she could barely recall it.
When What I Remember Most begins, we learn a little of the past…and then we see the young woman she has become, Dina Hamilton, betrayed by her husband and charged, along with him, for fraud, embezzlement, and money laundering. We also see her running for her life, changing her name because of the publicity, and then hoping against hope that her attorney can protect her from a guilty verdict.
In a small town in Central Oregon, Grenady, as she is now calling herself, starts over. Keeping her secrets, keeping her head down, and even sleeping in her car for a while, she finally is beginning to feel safe. What a handsome furniture maker brings to her life, and who helps her reinvent her artistic collages with her unique vision, makes the story into a beautiful exploration of love and hope.
Narrated in Grenady’s first person voice, we also see narrative entries from her time in foster care, providing some of that history. And we see the narrative of an unnamed psychotic individual who is part of her past, too.
How will Grenady finally escape the pain of the past? What will trigger the memories she had lost? And how will the new friends, including a wonderful woman named Rozlyn and her daughter Cleo, provide a sense of family?
As always, I savored the characters, the prose, and the wonderful settings that brought this story to life for me. My only issue was that the story bogged down, at times, but then the author always brought it right back up for me. Recommended for fans of the author. 4.5 stars.