By Laura Pearson – Boldwood Books, 2023
Mabel Beaumont is an 86-year-old widow who has just lost her husband of 62 years. Arthur was a good man, who loved Mabel unconditionally. And though his wife was not affectionate, their marriage was one of mutual respect. Arthur habitually made lists for everything from shopping to love notes and died with an unfinished list: Find D. Mabel knows he means for her to find her long-lost, best friend, Dot. Mabel starts a list of her own. Soon, and very much out of character, Mabel makes friends of all ages, all of whom appear to have problems Mabel can solve (with a bit of meddling), and thus her list grows. Things rarely go as she hopes, but the women all offer their different skills to help reconnect Mabel and Dot. This relatable novel is told in Mabel’s voice, capturing the emotions, wisdom and regrets of an older woman dealing with loneliness, vulnerability and feelings of invisibility. She must get beyond what’s been holding her back all her life and live with joy, as she’s learned from her new friends. And now, nothing will get in her way. Put this one on your list.