Good Grief

Good Grief - Lolly Winston I don't typically read what some people think of as 'chick-lit,' and it would be all too easy to dismiss this book as just that. However, 'Good Grief' is a very entertaining piece of literary fiction peopled with characters to both love and hate.The story centers on a young widow, Sophie, who has a full-on nervous breakdown and loses her job as a Silicon Valley ad executive. She decides to sell everything and move to Ashland, Oregon, where she will stay with her college roommate for a while. Eventually her funds dwindle, and she takes a job waiting tables ... and decides to be part of the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program.Now, these two events don't sound like much in and of themselves, but they are the catalysts for numerous other events in the tale that provide a good deal of both entertainment and compassionate feeling for the reader. Sophie's 'little sister,' Crystal, comes from a horrible homelife and relies on Sophie for some stability ... but not in the easiest of ways. Furthermore, Sophie is a lousy waitress and is demoted to the kitchen ... which leads to some more great breakthroughs for her.This is a difficult book to review without giving spoilers. It's organized based on Elizabeth Kubler-Ross's stages of death and dying, as Sophie maintains that the living go through those stages in the wake of a loved one's passing. Within that framework, the author examines several social issues through the eyes of her characters.Honestly, I didn't want to put it down. Highly recommended.