Aging and recent widow Harriet Beamer insists she’s getting along fine with her dog Humphrey in Philadelphia … until she falls for the fourth time, injuring her ankle, and causing her son and daughter-in-law to cry foul. Insisting Harriet move in with them in California, they make a bet that her ankle is broken, and she foolishly promises to move if they’re right. Four x-rays later, Harriet’s ankle---and her heart---are broken. She packs up, ships her huge salt and pepper collection to California, and prepares to move away from the only life she knows. The only catch? She’s doing it her way. Just wait till her daughter-in-law hears Harriet will travel cross country only by public transportation and alternate means. What follows is a hilarious, heartwarming journey by train, metro bus, ferry, and motorcycle. Along the way, Harriet discovers that although her family thinks it’s time for her to be put out to pasture---God has a different plan.
Joyce Magnin is the author of five novels, including the popular and quirky Bright’s Pond Series and the middle grade novel Carrying Mason. She is a frequent conference speaker and writing instructor. Joyce lives in Pennsylvania with her son, Adam, and their crazy cat, Mango, who likes to eat nachos.
Harriet Beamer is a spunky and energetic senior determined to have one last chance at fun. Instead of taking the plane clear across the country to live with her son and his wife, Harriet decided to have some adventures along the way and take only public transportation.
When necessary, she found some alternate means of travel. I loved the story of her train rides, the short stint in a motorcycle sidecar, and the helicopter ride. She was definitely resourceful, and always seemed to find interesting people and places to see along the way.
Harriet has a big heart, and was totally trusting and compassionate to the people she met during her travels. More than once her generosity and trusting spirit got her into some sticky situations.
Quirky and humorous, this book is about a sweet senior who has lots of adventures to explore. I'm not sure if there will be a sequel to this book, but it would be fun to see how Harriet adjusts to her new life with her family in California.
For an inspirational story with a generous twist of laughter sprinkled throughout, I highly recommend Harriet Beamer Takes the Bus.
Disclosure: Book received through Zondervan in exchange for my honest review.