“Keeping Time,” a debut novel by Stacey McGlynn, is the story of a spirited 77-year-old woman living independently in Liverpool, England.
Daisy, the novel’s heroine, is vital and determined to stay in her home, though her son and daughter-in-law plead with her to sell it and move to senior
Their concern, combined with the fact that her new boss at the library has informed her that her volunteer services are no longer needed, her best friend is going away on a summer vacation and her son wants some of the money from the sale of her house, cause Daisy much anxiety.
Daisy needs an adventure. When she discovers in a box in the cellar a long-forgotten watch with an inscription by Arthur Rubenstein, she has her starting point. The watch reignites her curiosity about what happened to her long-lost love along with some guilt for having kept the watch all these years.
Near the end of World War II, Daisy’s first love, Michael Baker, an American soldier stationed in England, proposed to her, and she said yes. At war’s end, Michael returned to Brooklyn with a promise to send for her. He wrote, they wrote and then communication abruptly stopped. Eventually, Daisy married Paul and had two sons.
With a decades-old Brooklyn address as her only clue, Daisy journeys to New York City to find Michael and return his watch – if not to him, to his children.
At a hectic family reunion on Long Island, she meets her second cousin, Elisabeth, and her family. Despite the cousins’ rocky past, Elisabeth’s family is determined to help Daisy with her quest. Elisabeth and one of her teenage sons join in the search for Daisy’s lost love, drawing the reader into the adventure.
“Keeping Time” is human comedy at its vivid best, with a main character the reader will long remember.