Monday, March 14, 2011

Dear Great Book Guru, What a busy week in Sea Cliff! First, Election Day on Tuesday followed by a celebration of civic virtue at the Metropolitan Bistro and then St. Patrick's Day with parties all over town- from a festive lunch at B. Brown's to dinner and drinks through the night at Roots, Partners, and of course our very own Irish pub- K.C. Gallagher's. Now I would like to get into a good "welcome to spring" novel. Any thoughts? Spring Celebrant

Dear Spring Celebrant, Yes, this was a wonderful week to be in Sea Cliff. I was at a lovely St. Patrick's Gala myself where the talk quickly turned to an upcoming literary event: the annual Barbara Pym Conference at Harvard University this weekend. You probably know that Pym is a favorite of many Sea Cliff literati. Aside from her great skills as a writer, so many of her novels are set in Sea Cliff-like English villages and peopled by characters that strongly resemble our very own friends and neighbors. The Hansmann-Kennedys and the DiPietros will be there representing the Pym Society of Sea Cliff; the books to be discussed are EXCELLENT WOMEN and NO FOND RETURN OF LOVE. Either book will make you sing of spring. NO FOND RETURN… opens with the heroine Dulcie Mainwaring's odd but wise decision to attend a literary conference to get over a broken heart and a broken engagement. Her curiosity about the lives of others makes for many an interesting adventure- from parish halls to seaside resorts all accompanied by a bevy of familiar Sea Cliff-like characters. Pym's novels are touching and light-hearted at same time- the perfect introduction to spring.

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