Sigrid Macdonald’s “Finding Lisa” is a well written, exceptionally edited novel, which I found hard to put down; even thought I was disappointed in the ending, but it did leave me thinking “what would I have done in a similar situation?” And any novel, that could leave you thinking and wondering what you might have done means that the author has done a really good job.

Tara, the narrator and the main character, and Lisa her best friend walk out of a movie theater at the beginning of the book and go and eat at a deli where they sit down to talk. Lisa, a member of AA, tells Tara that she is pregnant and that she thinks a dark skinned man, whom she had a one night stand with while she went off the wagon, is the father but she doesn’t remember anything else about him. Ryan, her boyfriend for over a year and white skinned, have been trying to get pregnant for some time but with no luck. The time she had the fling matches up perfectly with the amount of time she has been pregnant.

Tara, a member of WAR (or as she likes to say a member of women against all men) warns her about Ryan’s past as an abuser of women. That was the last time she sees Lisa, at least for a long time, as she goes missing. A manhunt for the missing lady quickly is arranged, and it is against this background that a number of fascinating story lines are developed. Both Lisa and Tara are 39 years old and will turn the dreaded forty this year. It is the struggled that Tara has with getting older that really pulls you into this story… From her perception of losing her sex appeal, to the bad choices she has made so far in life, to her weight, diet, and the change of her clothes to fit her changing body. If this seems trivial it is not. It is heart wrenching and is honesty and truthfulness is what makes this novel so very appealing.

There is quite a bit of narrative about the Canadian lifestyle and culture, and where some readers might not like this, I found it fascinating and insightful and I definitely recommend this book.


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