Thursday, October 19, 2017

G921 Book Review of Woman Enters Left by Jessica Brockmole

Name of Book: Woman Enters Left

Author: Jessica Brockmole

ISBN: 978-0-399-17851-1

Publisher: Ballantine Books

Type of book: 1952, 1926, road trip, car, Hollywood, friendship, romance, secrets, coming-of-age, death, radium, cancer, seize the day

Year it was published: 2017


A woman sets out on a cross-country road trip, unknowingly tracing in reverse the path her mother traveled thirty years before.

In the 1950s, movie star Louise Wilde is caught between an unfulfilling acting career and a shaky marriage when she receives an out-of-the-blue phone call: She has inherited the estate of Florence “Florrie” Daniels, a Hollywood screenwriter she barely recalls meeting. Among Florrie’s possessions are several unproduced screenplays, personal journals, and—inexplicably—old photographs of Louise’s mother, Ethel. On an impulse, Louise leaves a film shoot in Las Vegas and sets off for her father’s house on the East Coast, hoping for answers about the curious inheritance and, perhaps, about her own troubled marriage.

Nearly thirty years earlier, Florrie takes off on an adventure of her own, driving her Model T westward from New Jersey in pursuit of broader horizons. She has the promise of a Hollywood job and, in the passenger seat, Ethel, her best friend since childhood. Florrie will do anything for Ethel, who is desperate to reach Nevada in time to reconcile with her husband and reunite with her daughter. Ethel fears the loss of her marriage; Florrie, with long-held secrets confided only in her journal, fears its survival.

In parallel tales, the three women—Louise, Florrie, Ethel—discover that not all journeys follow a map. As they rediscover their carefree selves on the road, they learn that sometimes the paths we follow are shaped more by our traveling companions than by our destinations.


Main characters include Florrie, Ethel and Louise. Florrie Daniels is a screenplay writer who is resourceful, talented but was forced to hide her shine due to the thought that people wouldn't be interested in what she really wrote. Florrie is also a go-getter and brave and isn't a good cook but at the same time she is afraid of going after what is really in her heart. Ethel is Louise's mother and she is a talented chef, meticulous with details as well as expenses and while she shines on her own, she also seems to be fragile and somehow broken although she is determined and doesn't give up. Louise is Ethel's daughter and she is a whole lot like Florrie rather than her mother. Louise is struggling to save her marriage from some secrets that her husband refused to share with her.


You never know what you'll learn on the open road


The story is told in third person narrative from Louise's point of view (the chapters that are marked 1952,) but others are first person narrative in diary and journal entries from Florrie's and Ethel's points of view, (chapters marked 1926) which is a unique take in my opinion. What I found pretty amazing are the small details that the author had Ethel include which includes finances as well as excerpts from a screenplay that Florrie wrote and on traveling by themselves. At the same time there is an unexpected twist that is haunting Florrie and Ethel and that the reader doesn't learn about until way way later in a book. All these elements create an addictive story.

Author Information:
(From the website)

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-a-Million | iTunes | IndieBound | Kobo

About the Author

Jessica Brockmole is the author of At the Edge of Summer, the internationally bestselling Letters from Skye, which was named one of the best books of 2013 by Publishers Weekly, and Something Worth Landing For, a novella featured in Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War. She lives in northern Indiana with her husband, two children, and far too many books.
For more information, please visit Jessica Brockmole’s website. You can also find her on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Goodreads.


It's hard to put into words how much I enjoyed the read but the best way to describe this read is to imagine finding something that appears too good to be true but is in fact real and without any strings or ties attached. Characters, the time, the story and coping with the hand that life dealt you are perfectly balanced within the pages, and there is something in the book that just keeps me wanting to keep on going, to see how the story will turn out for the characters. There is a lot of focus on friendships and on how important that friendship is to Florrie and Ethel and there are also elements of romance in unexpected twists as well. For an awesome open road story that is more focused on seizing life and friendship and a story that is rich in period detail, this is not a book to be missed. Also, I loved the book cover.

This is for HFVBT

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, September 4
Review at Creating Herstory
Feature at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Tuesday, September 5
Feature at Just One More Chapter

Thursday, September 7
Interview at T’s Stuff

Friday, September 8
Feature at Passages to the Past

Monday, September 11
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time

Wednesday, September 13
Feature at To Read, Or Not to Read

Thursday, September 14
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Friday, September 15
Review at Trisha Jenn Reads

Sunday, September 17
Review at Carole Rae’s Random Ramblings

Monday, September 18
Review at A Bookish Affair

Tuesday, September 19
Interview at A Bookish Affair

Wednesday, September 20
Feature at BookLiterati

Friday, September 22
Review at A Literary Vacation

Monday, September 25
Review at Portebello Book Blog

Tuesday, September 26
Review at Jorie Loves a Story

Wednesday, September 27
Feature at Books of All Kinds

Thursday, September 28
Review at Jenn’s Book Vibes

Friday, September 29
Review at The Lit Bitch
Interview at Jorie Loves a Story

Monday, October 2
Review at What Cathy Read Next
Review at CelticLady’s Reviews

Thursday, October 5
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

Friday, October 6
Review at Broken Teepee

5 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

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