Dating again in middle age? It's not for the faint of heart. And it can get very interesting. Check out an excerpt and my thoughts on Middle Ageish by Shirley Goldberg. Be sure to leave questions and comments for the author as you follow the rest of the tour. And best of luck entering the giveaway at the end!
Sunny Chanel's marriage is circling the drain when her husband marks his colonoscopy on the calendar and ignores their anniversary. With divorce papers instead of roses on the horizon, she says "au revoir" Paris and croissants, and "hello" cheap New Haven apartment and ramen noodles.
With the encouragement of her friends, Sunny jumps into online dating, twenty-three years and twenty pounds after her last date. To her surprise she discovers dating might require a helmet, and occasionally armor to protect her heart, but after years of being ignored, her adventurous side craves fun and conversation. She’s middle-aged not dead. Then suddenly, on the way to reinventing herself, life takes a left turn when the one man she can't forget calls with an unexpected request.
Of course, my goodbye party was at Chez Lulu in the Latin Quarter, Paris’ most Bohemian arrondissment. Lulu’s has that Fifties diner look—clean, spare and edgy like an Edward Hopper painting minus the feeling of isolation. It’s always packed, and the music is Buddy Holly, early Elvis, Patsy Cline, the Everly Brothers—a mix of rock and roll and country.
“Dinner’s here,” announced Dulcie, waving her beer glass before taking a long pull. “Everyone let them through!”
“Hey, ain’t this a swell party?” said Bertrand, arriving at our noisy table with an armload of gourmet burgers. “Who’s got the Marilyn Monroe with Mickey Mantles?”
Have I mentioned all the waiters are imitation James Deans, white T-shirts and jeans with rolled cuffs? Bertrand and Albert—they both speak perfect, slangy English—are our favorites. Bertrand is flirty in a sweet way and working his way through the Institute d’Etudes Politiques de Paris.
“And the Robert Mitchum with Buddy Holly fries?” Lulu’s boasts seven varieties of American fries, named for baseball players, or French and American pop stars.
“Two Jane Russells with Joe DiMaggio fries?” Albert, at Lulu’s between acting jobs, shouted, and everyone quieted for a moment, shuffling plates and passing them across the table. Movie star burgers with caramelized onions on miniature baguette buns. My mouth was so ready.
My going-away party...and I am not going to cry.
Next to me, Natalie held out The Middle-Aged Idiot’s Guide to Online Dating. “For when you start dating,” she yelled over the roar that is Lulu’s.
“Like dating is on my list of things to do?” I said around my burger. “Below sticking a rusty fork in my eye.”
Middle Ageish is her first book in the series Starting Over. Her character believes you should never leave home without your sense of humor and Shirley agrees.
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