From the moment I opened the package which contained the review copy of “Looking for Me: A Novel,” I was intrigued, and hopeful that the story inside would match my expectations. I wasn’t disappointed.
New York Times best selling author Beth Hoffman invites the reader to join her to peer through the looking glass into Teddi Overman’s life, and see if we catch a glimpse of ourselves therein. I would say there were more than a few moments during the story where I saw myself, a version of me anyway.
In her storytelling, Ms. Hoffman makes use of the flashback technique as we accompany Teddi on a trip back home, literally and figuratively. As they say, you can never really go home again, and in this tale we can easily see why Teddi opts to let the antiques she works with be the only things that celebrate the past. However, as we learn through this story, by limiting what we let our hearts feel, we limit whatever healing may take place.
I thoroughly enjoyed the way Ms. Hoffman explored Teddi’s relationship to the antiques she works to repair and sell in her shop, and how she makes the pieces more of the central characters, rather than an after thought. I also found myself charmed by the character of Mr. Palmer, the iconic antiques guru who takes Teddi under his wing, as his protégé. He reminded me of many a mentor I’ve known in my life, be it in the field of antiques, business, journalism, or education. Under the tough exterior is someone who sees potential in another, and wants nothing more for them to tap into that potential and soar.
Dealing, or more correctly, not dealing with the unusual ‘loss’ of her brother, is a significant aspect of Teddi’s story, but I appreciated the way Ms. Hoffman revolved that factor of the story, loosely tying it all together.
My two favorite phrases in this book are:
“Don’t forget where you came from.”
“We will be known forever by the tracks we leave.”
This book is available at booksellers nationwide, and directly from the publisher: Penguin Books.