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Crush on A Character

Musing Mondays2

This week’s musing asks:

Do you ever get crushes on fictional characters? Name one (or a few), and tell what you liked…

About four years ago, I read a book called Letter from Point Clear, a novel the love, need, discomfort, resentment, and warmth shared among grown siblings. Unfortunately, I didn’t feel it was given the reception it deserves. So I choose this book today. The novel begins after a year since all three of them—Ellen, Morris, and Bonnie—had reunited at their father’s funeral. Bonnie, who sported an unsuccessful career as an actress in New York City, moved back to the family mansion and took care of her father in his final days. Bonnie has married a fundamentalist preacher whose parents prophetically named him Pastor. Pastor is a few years junior of Bonnie whom he has converted to the faith and rescues from drugs. Although he shows depth of his understanding of her lifelong trouble–which she sees as a train wreck–he cannot make sense of her not having Ellen and Morris at the wedding. The truth is, Bonnie hates herself for thinking of Morris, a 41-years-old professor, his being gay, as something to avoid and put off, and she reminds herself that Pastor’s primary message is love, and that whatever he believes about homosexuality would be filtered by that. I quickly warmed to Morris and his character—he is intelligent, funny but also reserved. As I perused the book, I worried about Morris, who resorts to silly barb at the hint of any emotion discussion, and how his brother-in-law’s manipulations, well-intentioned or not but wrongheaded for sure, might hurt him and how it might affect Bonnie’s marriage. McFarland deftly resolves the conflicts pulsing subtly but insistently through the pages, which grapple with the dynamics of family love and reminiscence in all their infinite depth and complexity.


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