Onstage, the singing duo of Gabe and Mitzi Steiner captured America's heart for more than two decades. Offstage, their own hearts have throbbed as one for sixty years. Only now, Gabe has retreated into the tangles of Alzheimer's, leaving Mitzi to ponder her future alone.
On the other side of Tulsa, everyone believes Brooke Woodson has found the perfect man--a handsome lawyer with sights on becoming Tulsa's next District Attorney. If only Brooke felt more sure. If only her fiancé could control his anger. If only love didn't come with so many scars.
When an accident lands Brooke in the hospital where Mitzi volunteers, the two women quickly develop an unlikely friendship birthed by providence and bathed in grace. And with Mitzi's help, kindness, and insight, Brooke learns how to pick up the broken pieces of her life.
Tulsa's jazz past meets the present in an issue-oriented tale from Stewart (Chasing Lilacs). Mitzi Steiner has enjoyed a 60-year marriage and successful singing partnership with her husband, Gabe. In their later years, Gabe lives in the twilight of Alzheimer's. Volunteering as a "Pink Lady" at a hospital to keep herself busy, Mitzi is deeply affected when Brooke Woodson arrives in the ER, bearing signs of domestic abuse, signs Mitzi recognizes from her childhood. The former jazz singer and the young woman, a paralegal engaged to an ambitious lawyer with an explosive temper, form a bond as each shares her story. Mitzi's tale, narrated in flashback, works. Her past is filled with color, and her present is poignant. Brooke's story is less persuasive; as she moves from battered passivity to strength, characters in the abuse plot thread her fianc 's aunt, her father are less than credible. The fresher story is grounded in history and in Alzheimer's, a tough subject in life and fiction. In her sophomore novel, Stewart stumbles with the contemporary elements; she should concentrate on her strength with history.