printed copy

What I Remember Most

Cathy Lamb

ISBN 9780758295064
Publish Date 8/26/2014
Format Trade Paperback
Categories Family Life, General, Women's Fiction, Kensington

In a new novel rich in grace, warmth, and courage, acclaimed author Cathy Lamb tells of one woman's journey of reinvention in the wake of deep betrayal.

Grenadine Scotch Wild has only vague memories of the parents she last saw when she was six years old. But she's never forgotten their final, panicked words to her, urging Grenadine to run. The mystery of their disappearance is just one more frayed strand in a life that has lately begun to unravel completely. One year into her rocky marriage to Covey, a well known investor, he's arrested for fraud and embezzlement. And Grenadine, now a successful collage artist and painter, is facing jail time despite her innocence.

With Covey refusing to exonerate her unless she comes back to him, Grenadine once again takes the advice given to her so long ago: she runs. Hiding out in a mountain town in central Oregon until the trial, she finds work as a bartender and as assistant to a furniture-maker who is busy rebuilding his own life. But even far from everything she knew, Grenadine is granted a rare chance, as potentially liberating as it is terrifying--to face down her past, her fears, and live a life as beautiful and colorful as one of her paintings. . .

Outstanding Praise For Cathy Lamb And Her Novels

If You Could See What I See

"Lamb's story is earnest, heartwarming and, at times, heartbreaking." --RT Book Reviews

The First Day Of The Rest Of My Life

"The blending of three or more generations and the secrets they harbor keeps this story moving briskly, culminating in a satisfying ending that makes us believe that despite heartache and angst, there can be such a thing as happily ever after." --New York Journal of Books

Such A Pretty Face

"Stevie's a winning heroine." --Publishers Weekly

Henry's Sisters
An Indie Next List Notable Book

"A story of strength and reconciliation and change." --The Sunday Oregonian

"If you loved Terms of Endearment, the Ya Ya Sisterhood, and Steel Magnolias, you will love Henry's Sisters. Cathy Lamb just keeps getting better and better." --The Three Tomatoes Book Club

The Last Time I Was Me

"Charming." --Publishers Weekly

Julia's Chocolates

"Julia's Chocolates is wise, tender, and very funny. In Julia Bennett, Cathy Lamb has created a deeply wonderful character, brave and true. I loved this beguiling novel about love, friendship and the enchantment of really good chocolate." --Luanne Rice, New York Times bestselling author

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

1. What did you think of What I Remember Most? What three scenes best depict Grenadine Scotch Wild’s character?

2. Which character did you most relate to and why? Was there any part of the book that made you laugh or cry? What was your favorite scene?

3. If you could spend the day with Grenadine, Kade, Rozlyn, the Hutchinsons, or Eudora, who would you choose and what would you do?

4. Grenadine says, about herself, “I’m a crack shot and can hit damn near anything. . . . I’m a collage artist and painter. . . . I used to have a little green house. I sold it. That was a huge mistake. . . . I can smash beer cans on my forehead. . . . I fight dirty. Someone comes at me, and my instinctive reaction is to smash and pulverize. It has gotten me into trouble. . . . I have a temper, my anger perpetually on low seethe, and I have struggled with selfesteem issues and flashbacks for as long as I can remember. . . . I can wear four-inch heels and designer clothes like wealthy women, make social chitchat, and pretend I’m exactly like them. I am not like them at all . . .” Write down, and then share, how you would describe yourself.

5. Grenadine speaks in the first person. However, there are also police and children’s services reports; memos, letters from a doctor, a teacher, and Grenadine; a report card; a court transcript; and third-person passages from the point of view of Bucky. Did the structure work for you? Why?

6. Marley, a customer at The Spirited Owl said, “Women are so picky. If you don’t look like Brad Pitt or you’re not rich, they don’t want you.” Grenadine said, “No, they don’t want you, Marley, because you look like you have a baby in your stomach, you’re unshaven, you drink too much, and all you want to do is talk about yourself and whine in that whiny voice of yours. Would you be attracted to you? No? Then why would a woman be?” Why did the author give Grenadine a job at a bar? Is she a good bartender? If she gave you advice while you were drinking a margarita, what would she say to you?

7. Did the author portray Grenadine’s journey in foster care and the children’s services division workers accurately?

8. Why was Grenadine attracted to Kade? What did Kade have in common with her? Kade had spent time in jail because of gang related activities when he was younger. Would his record have stopped you from dating him?

9. From Bucky: She never should have gotten away. That was a mistake. He had not expected things to take so long. It had always bothered him. He liked things neat. Planned. Perfect. He wanted to see her again. Before. He would do it! He would think of a way. He pulled four strands of hair out of his head, then made a design on the table in front of him. He giggled. He twitched in his chair. He told himself a nursery rhyme. He changed the words to create a new rhyme. He sang it out loud. He wrote it in his rhyme book. He giggled again, then he hurdled his rhyme book across the room, tilted his head back and screamed. What element did Bucky bring to the story? Did it fit?

10. What did you think of Covey? Was there any good in him?

11. Did you learn anything about living and dying from Rozlyn? Would it have been more realistic, or a better ending for you, if Rozlyn had lived? Why do you think the author chose for her to die?

12. Grenadine said, “I paint what’s in my head. I paint whatever I’m thinking about at the time. I’ll twist it up, spin it out, add color, add layers, add collage items, and I keep going until it feels done.” If you were to make a painting or collage that would tell the story of your life, what would it look like? What materials would you use? What would it say about you? Grab the artist in you and sketch it out. . . .

About Cathy Lamb:

Cathy Lamb, the author of Julia’s Chocolates, The Last Time I Was Me, and Henry’s Sisters, lives in Oregon. She is married with three children. She writes late at night when it's just her and the moon and a few shooting stars.


Average Customer Review

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Customer Review

“Fry Me a Pig! Cathy’s Outdone Herself Again!” (Monday, July 21, 2014)
Reviewer: Nancy Narma

Talented Artist and Collagist, Dina Wild had only been married a little over a year to well-known financial investor Covey Hamilton, when her life began to unravel again. Her possessive, greedy husband’s unscrupulous dealings had been discovered and, although Dina had no knowledge of his underhanded practices, she was charged with theft, fraud, embezzlement, and money laundering and thrown in jail. When released, bruised, angry and frightened, she followed a voice she remembered from her childhood—“Run Grenadine, run!” She left Covey and fled Portland, leaving her uncomfortable, overblown lifestyle behind. With very limited funds, she settled in a town in Southern Oregon, Western-themed Pineridge. Knowing her money wouldn’t stretch very far, Dina, now known as Grenady, lived in her car while trying to find a job so she could survive. The auburn-haired, determined beauty found the chances slim until Tildy Green, gruff ,but good hearted owner of “The Spirited Owl” Bar/Restaurant hired her as a bartender. The pay plus kindness kept her fed and a bit more optimistic—but it also gave her time for old fears and questions from the past to rear their ugly heads. How would she ever be able to get out of her cramped auto abode and afford an apartment on her small wage and tips? Grenady decided to look for a second job. But, who would hire someone with a supposed criminal record? Taking a chance, she applied for a receptionist position at “Hendrick’s Furniture”, owned by a scarred “Mountain of a man”, Kade Hendricks, who may have some secrets of his own up his sleeve. Grenady was taken, being an artist herself, by the talented wood carvings on the Hendrick’s furniture line and hoped she would be given a chance at the position and, perhaps grow, trust, and re-invent herself. Little did Grenady know the prospects this opportunity could afford her. The unforgettable story of 6 yr. old Grenadine Scotch Wild, starting with her discovery by a passing trucker in 1982 and progressing through her trials, tribulations, and foster home nightmares into her teens and beyond is one you will not soon forget. The fear, mistrust, anger, mistreatment and longing for love and security imprint the pages as clearly as someone leaving their fingerprints on glass. Your heart will ache—You’ll gasp, cry, cheer, chuckle, and, as you reach the epilogue,be wishing for more. The Author has, once again, pulled us into the protagonist’s world—where you feel like you know all of the characters’ hearts and souls—especially Talia, Rozlyn and Cleo DeMarco, and soon-to-be everyone’s favorite spy, Eudora, among many others. Bravo Ms. Lamb, You’ve outdone yourself once more. Be sure you put this on the very top of your “To-Be-Read List”. Nancy Narma


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