by Laura Munson
Three women, from coast to coast and in between, open their mailboxes to the same intriguing invitation. Although leading entirely different lives, each has found herself at a similar, jarring crossroads. Right when these women thought they’d be comfortably settling into middle age, their carefully curated futures have turned out to be dead ends.
The sender of the invitation is Willa Silvester, who is reeling from the untimely death of her beloved husband and the reality that she must say goodbye to the small mountain town they founded together. Yet as Willa mourns her losses, an impossible question keeps staring her in the face: So now what?
Struggling to find the answer alone, fiercely independent Willa eventually calls a childhood friend who happens to be in her own world of hurt–and that’s where the idea sparks. They decide to host a weeklong interlude from life, and invite two other friends facing their own quandaries. Soon the four women converge at Willa’s Montana homestead, a place where they can learn from nature and one another as they contemplate their second acts together in the rugged wilderness of big sky country.
As a Montanan, I felt at home. I know this world where people can be stubbornly “self-reliant” while treasuring their connections to each other without realizing how inter-dependent we really are. I was a transplant, much like Willa, when I arrived in the 1970s. This book spoke to my heart.
I found myself pulled along, wanting to know the ultimate ending and how/if she and the town would achieve the growth they needed. I won’t spoil that for you.
There is a lot of talking, and at times, it can be a bit much. But it only detracts a little. If you’re in a mood for a little self-reflection and a taste of Montana, this is a great book to read.