Before Twitter, before Yahoo, before Facebook, humans talked wrote letters, and walked upright - made friends rather than enrolled them. This is a story of that time.
The String Lady and Pete vividly and poignantly depicts the emergence of a forty year old man into manhood where love and laughter, sensuality and security, obligations and desires, take on new meaning. Obstacles are faced and decisions made that shake the very foundations of this Roman Catholic, Jesuit-educated, conservative Republican, East Coast school executive.
Previously committed to making his marriage work at all costs, Glen Burton responds to an unexpected note from a teacher who attended one of his seminars and sets in motion a series of events that both challenge and support his long-held beliefs and values. Ably assisted by USPS, Ma Bell, several airlines and two dear friends, Burton finally meets his magical, complex, troubled Alaskan lady in San Francisco. He soon realizes that she is the woman who can set him free, to enable him to become the man he longs to be. As he stretches to win her love, he finds himself riding an emotional roller coaster, consciously hurting those he loves but unable and unwilling to play by conventional rules any longer.
Glen and his Lady from Alaska begin a tumultuous journey that transforms them both. Each discovers true adult love and the price it extols. From Juneau to New York their love grows, and their magic touches the lives of many.
This is a story of love from a man’s perspective; a story to be read by every woman who truly wants to know her mate, or potential life-partner and by every man who wants to better know and deal with his own thoughts, desires and emotions.
McCarthy draws his readers to his heart, mind and soul, sharing intimacies all too frequently guarded by males and consequently unknown to most women. His powerful yet tender portrait of a city-bred school administrator and a wilderness-nurtured, peace activist teacher and their journey through troubled waters is remarkable for its insight and depth. His characters clearly demonstrate that dreams and desires can be foundations for reality and fulfillment.
In this age of swift communications and frequent chaos, The String Lady and Pete takes place in an earlier time of a slower pace, yet with no fewer emotional challenges than there are today. Author Bob McCarthy has beautifully captured the timeless subject of love; how we search for love and to be loved, and the fear of losing the love that has been found. Taking the reader through a fictional man’s journey to not settle in matters of the heart, McCarthy has poignantly revealed Pete’s strengths, flaws and fears, all the while in reality revealing for us these same characteristics within ourselves. As Pete searches for true love, McCarthy causes readers to stop and examine their own lives and ask if we have settled or found true love. Man or woman, single or in relationship, The String Lady and Pete is a must read for those who refuse to settle for less.
McCarthy’s masterly prose moves us empathically into the emotionally perilous world of Glen Peter Burton. Accomplished and personable, he is rising through the ranks of his profession when he is nearly derailed by an irresistible woman. This fresh fixation on his “String Lady” makes for a turbulent journey for Pete. Caught between conflicting desires, he struggles to honor his marriage and remain close to his children when all the while the String Lady has taken residence in his heart. Aided by support from his concerned friends, Pete struggles to create a pathway to his chosen destination. Written with aching honesty The String Lady and Pete tells a story where possibilities collide with realities. McCarty’s gift at storytelling and quirky humor engage and captivate us as we empathize with both Pete and his tantalizing String Lady. This is a guy’s book, hard to put down, a story of a man in love.
Glen Burton travels a path that many have been on before - successful, devoted to family, and committed to a life that is stable, defined, comfortable. The edges surrounding this life, however, are ragged – and jarred loose when he encounters the 'String Lady.' With deliberation, naïveté and humor, McCarthy tells a story written with keen wit, intellect and heart. From laugh-out-loud passages to the poignancy of how a life can be so tremendously challenged, The String Lady and Pete is a reminder of the choices and challenges each of us has in our lives.
Dr. Bob was born Robert McCarthy in Brooklyn, New York and received his bachelor’s from Fairfield University, a master’s from St. John’s University and a doctorate from Boston College. McCarthy was a school superintendent for more than twenty years and authored books on school organization as well as numerous articles in professional journals. A keynote speaker at educational conferences, he concluded his career teaching and mentoring graduate students at St. Mary’s College, Pepperdine University and the University of Wyoming.
The author shares his time between Union, Washington and San Francisco, California. The String Lady and Pete is his debut novel.