One Vacant Chair: A Novel

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Graywolf Press, Sep 30, 2008 - Fiction - 288 pages
33 Reviews
One Vacant Chair by Joe Coomer It’s where you sit down that determines everything in life.

Sarah’s aunt Edna paints portraits of chairs. Not people in chairs, just chairs. The old house is filled with her paintings, and the chairs themselves surround her work—a silent yet vigilant audience. At the funeral of Grandma Hutton—whom Edna has cared for through a long and vague illness—Sarah begins helping her aunt clean up the last of a life. This includes honoring Grandma’s surprising wish to have her ashes scattered in Scotland. As the novel turns from the oppressive heat of Texas to the misty beauty of Scotland, Sarah learns of her aunt’s remarkable secret life and comes to fully understand the fragile business of living, and even of dying.

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Review: One Vacant Chair

User Review  - Pat Fox - Goodreads

Novel about a middle aged woman at a crossroads whose future is opened up by her painter aunt. Read full review

Review: One Vacant Chair

User Review  - Suanne Laqueur - Goodreads

Coomer's tight focus on the mundane reveals the magical underbelly of everyday life. Fantastic! One of the best books I've ever read. Read full review


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About the author (2008)

Joe Coomer is the author of Pocketful of Names, Apologizing to Dogs, Beachcombing for a Shipwrecked God, The Loop, Sailing in a Spoonful of Water, and Dream House. He lives in Texas and Maine.

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