Across the Pond
What is the value of a person forgetting who they are?
Brits Elisa and Troy Kensington, both in their mid-thirties, have become American citizens and transplanted comfortably in Sacramento, California with their daughter, Mia.
Elisa's resentment of her live-in, Mum-in-law Fiona is escalating. Two years after arriving unannounced on their doorstep, Fiona refuses to work after losing her lavish lifestyle due to bad investments. Complications compound after Elisa is called to fetch her father Ian, a recent widower, who can no longer live alone at home in his beloved fishing village in Cornwall, England. Though Ian's reluctant fisher folk mates aren't sure America or Elisa's family are the right answer for a Cornishman.
The in-laws loathe each other and turn the once peaceful home into a battleground while attempting to win first place in the heart of their only grandchild. Fiona uses her past as a ballerina for the Royal Ballet to entice Mia who loves to dance. Ian relies on his granddaughter's intense interest in the tales he weaves about his fishing life on the coastal Cornish seas.
Troy is caught up trying to keep his job as the assistant CEO of a floundering solar panel company while appeasing his boss who is asking him to make unethical and illegal changes. Elisa is aware of the mounting pressure her husband is experiencing so she decides to keep to herself news that will only increase the growing financial burden on the household. She walks away from a fulfilling career as a travel writer and settles for a weekly column in the local newspaper and magazine article assignments that will keep her close to home.
After a relaxing family vacation at Lake Tahoe, Ian almost burns the house down as he advances to the next stage of Alzheimer's. Family life is becoming more of a three-ring circus, and not the type of circus Troy dreamed of joining in his childhood. The culture clash between sophisticated Londoner Fiona and rough and weathered fisherman Ian climaxes when he forgets Mia on one of their walks along the American River. Ian wanders off trying to find a way back to his mates Mick, Barry and Walt at the Maiden Voyage Pub.
Feeling alone on the wrong coast of the wrong ocean, Ian struggles to accept what he believes to be the end of himself. Elisa longs for the father she once knew and worshiped as he becomes more and more a stranger to her. Fiona's hard heart shows signs of cracking wide open and Troy may face jail time if he follows through with his bosses demands, and even if he doesn't, all evidence is lining up to point solely at him.
The Kensington big top is about to collapse.
Alone on the wrong coast of the wrong ocean.
**All Photographs illustrative of the Across the Pond Novel**
© Kathy Boyd Fellure
Author Kathy Boyd Fellure's novels are represented by Wendy Lawton, vice-president