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A Good Man
by Judith Henry Wall

Category: Fiction / General
304 pages; ISBN: 0684873885

Rating: 8/10  (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner

Review

A Good Man
Judith Henry Wall
Simon and Schuster, May 2005, 304 pp.
ISBN: 0684873885

In Lamberton, Texas Rhonda, Holly and Gina Kay were best buddies attending high school together. Rhonda had one foible: her obsessive love for her boyfriend Terry Robertson, an heir with a suicidal attitude. Her parents forced Rhonda to leave Terry to attend college; eventually she became a lawyer. In high school Holly fantasized of becoming a famous fashion designer, but instead runs a successful wedding-gown business. Gina Kay was impoverished with an ambulatory mother until she won the Miss American Teenager beauty contest that included a college scholarship. The friendship between the three buds ended when Terry eloped with Gina Kay.

The threesome is together for the first time in two decades at Terry’s ranch now owned by his widow Gina Kay following his funeral. After numerous attempts to kill himself and passengers by vehicular suicide, Terry lived up to the mantra of if at first you don’t succeed try again. With the object of their schism interred Rhonda, Holly and Gina Kay head to Manhattan to exorcise his ghost find reconciliation, and start new adventures with Russian immigrants in Brighton Beach.

This profound character study looks deep inside the three amigas and through them at the late Terry. The story line hooks the audience who want to know more about Terry and his relationships with the trio. Though the streets of Manhattan and Brooklyn enable further glimpses at the lead protagonists, that sidebar takes away from the critical essence of how a male can break up the strongest sisterhood bond (explained via well designed flashbacks). Judith Henry Wall paints a powerful family drama although the childhood friends are not related by blood, they act like siblings.

Harriet Klausner

 

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