In Anna Quindlen’s newest book, Rise and Shine, Meghan Fitzmaurice is a feisty, self-assured host of morning TV’s Rise and Shine. Thinking her microphone is muted after interviewing a high profile politician, she spews out her real opinion of him. A firestorm of bad press ensues, forcing her to a respite via the Caribbean. Her sister Bridget, a Bronx social worker and the story’s narrator, becomes the peacemaker/caregiver to those left behind. Impacted by the fallout of Meghan’s misstep is her college age son Leo, whose circumstances lead to more devastating events.
Quindlen’s pre-novelist career as a Pulitzer Prize winning columnist serves her well as a storyteller. She shows us that the human spirit is resilient when challenged. Her novels are consistent in that they provide glimpses into the fragility of familial bonds and opportunities to ponder our own relationships. The finely tuned, evocative language in Rise and Shine is no exception.