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Ladder of Years: 01/07/08
I read Ladder of Years after having so enjoyed Morgan's Passing. The premise seemed similar except this time with a female protagonist. While I enjoyed the first hundred pages, the last three hundred left me wishing I was rereading Morgan's Passing instead.
The Morgan in this novel is 40 year old Delia Grinstead who decides one day while on vacation to steal $500 from her family and walk away. The promised adventure from the back of the book ends up being a rather dull account of her 18 months living on her own in a small town where she works as a secretary and lives in a boarding house.
Of course, to be completely heartwarming and schmaltzy as possible, Delia ultimately goes home to her family and brings along her "family" from the small town where she has been living only to enrich the lives of everyone she knows.
The problem is, Delia never explains her actions. Tyler doesn't give enough insight into Delia's motivations to build that all important empathy. Without that connection, Delia comes off as shallow, unlikable, and boring.