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A Day Late and a Dollar Short
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About the Author

Terry McMillan is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Waiting to Exhale, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, A Day Late and a Dollar Short, The Interruption of Everything, I Almost Forgot About You, and the editor of Breaking Ice: An Anthology of Contemporary African-American Fiction. Four of Ms. McMillan's novels have been made into movies: Waiting to Exhale (Twentieth Century Fox, 1995); How Stella Got Her Groove Back (Twentieth Century Fox, 1998); Disappearing Acts (HBO Pictures, 1999); and A Day Late and a Dollar Short (Lifetime, 2014). She lives in California.

Reviews

McMillan's fifth novel introduces the Price family with the matriarch Viola surviving another major asthma attack. As her husband, Cecil, and four adult children rally around to support her recovery, the family's problems begin to surface. Paris, the oldest daughter and the most "together" on the outside, is secretly dependent on prescription pain killers. Then there's Lewis, the alcoholic with lots of "book sense but no common sense"; Charlotte, who is starved for attention; and Janelle, the baby, who can be led by anyone who says "go." Although McMillan develops her characters thoroughly, the plot feels rushed at the end, which, in fairy-tale manner, leaves everyone happy and satisfied. This, however, is the book's only fault. Otherwise, it is another of McMillan's dark comedies (if a bit grittier than usual) that explores family life using witty dialog from a very colorful cast. For popular and African American fiction collections. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 9/15/00; for Terry McMillan readalikes, see The Reader's Shelf, p. 200.DEd.]DEmily Jones, "Library Journal" Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Viola Price is the truth-telling, trash-talking Las Vegas matriarch at the center of McMillan's eagerly awaited new novel. As the book begins, Viola is in the hospital recovering from a devastating asthma attack, and she's decided to turn her life around, even if it means causing her large, unruly clan a little discomfort. Lewis, Viola's only son, is a drifter, handicapped both by his genius IQ and his alcoholism. Janelle, the youngest child, is perpetually searching for the perfect career, while ignoring signs that her 12-year-old daughter is in trouble. Viola's relationship with her perpetually angry middle daughter, Charlotte, is so volatile that Charlotte periodically hangs up in the middle of phone conversations, while Paris, Viola's eldest, appears to be brilliantly successful, but is actually desperately lonely and has developed a dependency on pills to maintain her superwoman act. To add to the confusion, Cecil, Viola's husband of 40 years, has moved in with his girlfriend, Brenda, a welfare mother pregnant with a child that may or may not be his. The story of how the family puts it back together is told from the perspective of all six main characters, and McMillan moves easily and skillfully from voice to voice. The characters are not entirely sympatheticDlike Viola, McMillan (How Stella Got Her Groove Back) doesn't sugarcoat the truthDbut knowing their weaknesses does make their acts of courage all the more meaningful. This is a moving and true depiction of an American family, driven apart and bound together by the real stuff of life: love, loss, grief, infidelity, addiction, pregnancy, forgiveness and the IRS. (Jan. 15) Forecast: Gutsier and less glitzy than How Stella Got Her Groove Back, McMillan's latest has perhaps the broadest appeal of any of her novels. A major national advertising campaign, national publicity, a TV and radio satellite tour and a 12-city author tour will get the word out and drive the book toward the top of the charts. Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

"A glorious novel...without question, this is McMillan's best." --The Washington Post

"McMillan has the uncanny ability to render family conflict with both humor and compassion...a life-affirming read...a triumph." --The Los Angeles Times

"Touching and funny." --People

"[McMillan] in top form." --The New York Times Book Review

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