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Book details
  • Genre:FICTION
  • SubGenre:Suspense
  • Language:English
  • Pages:318
  • Format:Paperback
  • eBook ISBN:9781667855080
  • Paperback ISBN:9781667855073

Lady B and Her Memory Box

by James Pumpelly

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Overview
Lady B and Her Memory Box is a work of fiction in the thriller, suspense, and interpersonal drama subgenres. This compassionate and fascinating novel takes us to Lady B in a nursing home during her final weeks. Recounting the thrilling and exciting decades of her life, we go on a journey with her through the worlds of modeling, theater, Hollywood, and the ever-changing faces of the entertainment world.
Description
Ranging from the film noir world of shadowy figures and mysterious events to real-life Hollywood personalities and glamourous encounters, Lady B's story spans six decades of life in the fast lane of theater, modeling, period design and décor, and the ever-changing challenges of success in the food and entertainment business. Meditative, playful, concise, and expansive, Lady B spends her final weeks in a nursing home excavating memories from diaries, newspaper clippings, photos, and personal correspondence. Dying from Parkinson's and crippling arthritis, she regales her hospice nurses and adoring priest with memories of both tenderness and alienation. Engrossing, lucid, and complex, her storied life speeds the book along like a bestselling thriller, a plot you don't want to end. The novel is a composite of the author's experiences caring for family members suffering from Parkinson's, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Alzheimer's, and Covid, all of whom died from their afflictions. Compelling and powerful with first-hand accuracy, Lady B and Her Memory Box speaks for any who have witnessed a loved one waste away in the throes of a slow and dehumanizing disease; but with a surprising finish - death can be a camouflage for new beginnings.
About the author
Reared by traveling evangelists, my sheltered years were a moth-swarm of questions and quandaries. Like drawn curtains against the sun, my naiveté rebuffed the dazzle of temporal joy. I feigned comprehension, for to do otherwise was to be reproached by the happiness of others - until the milieu of university curricula enlightened me. As Eudora Welty wrote, "A sheltered life can be a daring life as well. For all serious daring starts from within." In retrospect, I treasure the innocent years - as most do - a kind of throwback to Thoreau's years at Walden. Yet, as I write, I suspect only romanticists empathize with my quest, my yearning for warmth - like a meadow on a summer day. Peace. A palliative of which the world is bereft. Having eyes that see, and ears that hear (in the biblical sense), I often feel complicit in the world's duress, escaping via demiurgic expression, creating characters, places, and events by the whim of fancy. Freud instructed us to hold our parents accountable for our problematic existence. Marx told us we should point the finger at the upper class. Blake believed if the doors of perception were cleansed, we would see everything as it is. Infinite. But truth is beyond the rim of the Buddhist Wheel of Becoming. Beyond mortal comprehension. Accordingly, I've searched through the fifty states, and much of Europe and Asia, gathering impressions for my narrative. To quote Melville, "This world clean fails me: still, I yearn." Such hunger funds the heart, the will to live, a sense of prayer instead of despair. As the journey lengthens and the destination seems never nearer, I've grown to accept that my journey IS the destination. A writer's duty, I think, is to brave possibilities. Temerity breathes life into characters. Accepting the challenge, I've been writing since the mid-seventies - poetry (that window on the soul) and short stories, reflecting the uniqueness of station and local. Before college, I was homeschooled, due to my parents' constant travel. As an adult, I've called home by many names: Texas, Georgia, the Netherlands, Massachusetts, Vermont, Louisiana, and now Florida. My hobbies include reading, cooking, gardening, and piano (the latter one of my college majors), and writing - making memories into more than they were; for memories are living things, conjoining the past and the future, resurrecting the dead and imagining the unborn. Two thousand years ago, Pilate asked Christ, "What is truth?" the answer is every man's quest - to which I add another Pilate excerpt: "What I have written I have written."
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