In ALL THE GOOD PARTS, Loretta Nyhan’s new novel, thirty-nine year-old, Leona is single, broke, going to college on-line to become a nurse and living in her sister Carly’s basement. She’s perfectly content being wacky Auntie Lee to Carly’s four children, but really, it’s getting kind of old. Leona goes to the OB/Gyn for a routine check-up and Dr. Bridget informs Leona that if she wants to have a baby, she better start think about doing it soon, like right away. She tells her in no uncertain terms, that her biological clock is ticking, loudly and the longer she waits, the harder it’ll be to get pregnant – if that’s what she wants.
Leona who hasn’t really thought about whether or not she wants to have a baby for most of her adult life, suddenly realizes, she does want a baby. In fact, she always has, but the circumstances have never been exactly right. Now she has a huge decision to make: face motherhood on her own or risk missing out on its rewards, unless she can come up with some sperm. Of course, there’s adoption and infertility treatments, but hello, that costs a lot of money and she is living in her sister’s basement.
Add to that, Leona has no romantic life and she can count the number of single men she knows on one hand. Her prospects include a Vietnam vet and partial amputee, named Jerry who she works for as a home care helper, his rude-intimidating son, Paul, sweet but troubled Garrett who tutors her niece, Maura, yet they know nothing else about and a fellow nursing student she’s never met, in fact, she only “knows” him by “Darryl K.” on-line.
As Leona discovers more about each guy, she realizes anyone of them could be the right man for the job. But, the more important question is she ready to become a mom?
I enjoyed how Loretta brought together a bunch of quirky characters that basically had nothing in common and created a family within Loena’s family. Leona’s sister is married to Donal (correct spelling), a guy from Ireland, so it was fun getting some Irish flavor in the dialogue. The takeaway from ALL THE GOOD PARTS is to believe in yourself and not to give up on your dreams. It’s a delightful book to read when you’re in the mood for something light and happy. Grab a nice glass of chilled wine and curl up on a comfy sofa!