By: Lynne Branard
Publication Date: January 2017
Reviewed by: Diane Lunsford
Review Date: February 25, 2017
Lynne Branard takes her audience on a delightful road trip in her latest novel, Traveling Light.
She is thirty-something, has worked for her Dad’s newspaper since she finished school and that’s just how life was meant to play out for Alissa Wells. This is until she bids on an abandoned storage unit and discovers the ashes of some strange man by the name of Roger Hart. It turns out he has a family miles away in New Mexico. Is she supposed to leave the comforts of her North Carolina home and deliver Roger to his rightful resting place? Is this a sign from the guy upstairs telling her it’s high time she broke out of her comfort zone and dare to do something beyond her complacent existence?
Alissa assumed adulthood far too early in life. She had to. Her mom passed from a brain tumor far too early in life. It was a natural fruition for Alissa to assume the role of accommodating her demanding baby sister, Sandra. They used to get along once upon a time. Sandra left North Carolina when she was old enough to pursue the life she was deserving of—fancy house, lots of money and a husband who took over where Alissa left off in acquiescing Sandra’s every whim. Yet Alissa never left. It was time to break out of her comfort zone and perhaps the discovered remains of Roger Hart would help her do just that.
She covers her duties and responsibilities at the newspaper, informs her Dad she is headed to New Mexico to return Roger’s ashes to the rightful owner and she is off. With her three-legged dog in tow, all that is left is to watch North Carolina fade into the distance of her rearview mirror. She never reached far beyond the city limits let alone considered a solo road trip. When she meets Blossom, a recent grad from high school, and agrees to allow her to hitch a ride as far as Texas, life as Alissa once knew it was about to become a distant memory.
Lynne Branard has the ability to open her arms and welcome her audience in with a natural flow and style that is delivered through her obvious writing ability. She is a true storyteller and knows how to engage with her audience within the first handful of pages. The dialogue is crisp and credible and the storyline flows. Her characters are believable and there is no predictability toward what will unfold with the turn of each page. There is a soothing tone to her voice which beckons the reader to sit back and relax as he or she enjoys the journey of her story. I give Ms. Branard praise for delivering yet another must read in her catalogue of terrific stories.
Quill says: Traveling Light pairs well with a rainy day and a comfy recliner.