Ever since I was a little girl, my absolute favorite thing in the whole world has been to curl up with a good book.
A good book in a hammock.
A good book on my grandmother’s porch.
A good book smuggled under the covers with a flashlight.
A good book held in my right arm as I snuggle my toddler with my left, waiting for sleep to overtake him.
A good book, across from my husband and his good book, on the couch in our first apartment.
A good book in the car on a trip or on a plane, keeping me company across the miles.
A good book in the sky chair that swings under the canopy of our forest.
A good book.
Thanks to my husband who just returned from a weeklong trip and an aching pain in my side where the ailing ovary will soon come out, I had a few hours (yes, hours!) to read a book this morning. It was fabulous.
Confessions of a Contractor: a novel, by Richard Murphy, is a solid book in a shiny red jacket that is a pleasure to hold, to read, and to get lost in its pages. The protagonist, a simple man who lives in an apartment and drives his father’s beat-up pickup truck, shows appropriate yet clear insight into the lives of the families that he works for/with. As he reconstructs their houses, he deconstructs their lives and tweaks their circumstances here and there, as he sees fit, to improve their marriages, their relationships, their lots in life.
Until he meets Sally Stein. Sally is the challenge, the opportunity, the reason that he begins to look outside his ordered life and wonder what pieces he has been missing. His work for and with her changes him, and he is caught off guard a little by that. The developments that ensue are thrilling if mundane, and totally believable.
Confessions of a Contractor is a book that kept my attention long past my expectations. It drew me in with its frank confessions about renovating a house and renovating a family, and it kept my attention with a well-paced story and engaging characters. Whether the subject is the women overseeing the renovations, their busy or missing husbands, or the contractors themselves, the author peppers the story with unexpected revelations that work on both a personal and a professional level.
Whether you’re considering renovating, wondering how to prepare to meet the contractor, or just intrigued with the world of the uber-rich in LA (and the contractors who work in their homes), this is a book that will keep you reading well past lights-out.