In Greetings from Nowhere by Barbara O’Connor, the reader is introduced to a cast of characters who don’t seem to have anything in common. There’s Aggie, whose husband has just died, forcing her to sell the Sleepy Time Motel when she can no longer take care it. There’s Willow, whose parents don’t love each other anymore and who doesn’t quite know what to do with herself now that her mother is gone. There’s Loretta, whose other mother just “crossed over to the other side” and left her a box full of mysteries. And then there’s Kirby, who is driving into the Great Smoky Mountains with his mother because he has attend a special school for boys. Kirby knows the real reason he’s going is because everyone hates him.
Eventually, everyone ends up at the Sleepy Time Motel and that’s when things really get interesting. While all the characters are different ages, they all learn something from one another as they gather around an emptied out old pool. The book is organized into chapters told from the point of view of a different character every time. Reading this book made me feel good all the way down to my toes.
Reviewed by Ms. Meghan Beshara