Fling!
by Lily Iona Mackenzie



Pen-L Publishing, 2015. ISBN 978-1-942-42820-6.
Reviewed by Ann McCauley
Posted on 11/25/2015

Fiction: Literary; Fiction: Mainstream

This is a mother daughter bonding story like no other. Ninety-year-old Bubbles is a risk taker and 57-year-old Feather feels more like her mother's care-taker than her daughter. Bubbles lives in an assisted living facility in Calgary, Canada. Feather is a university professor, and lives in San Francisco.

When Bubbles is notified by the Mexican dead-letter office that her mother's ashes, lost seventy years before, have been found in a shoebox, she becomes a woman with a mission. She convinces Feather to go with her on an overdue adventure. Long before, Feather had chosen to distance herself geographically from her eccentric mother, though she speaks to her several times a week. Feather soon learns that the frequent short phone calls have not prepared her for an extended Mexican vacation with her mother.

The story is told through Feather's and Bubble's alternating narratives. Bubble's long-dead mother, grandmother, and grandfather materialize and their amusing exploits throw so many twists to the plot that at times it is a bit difficult to follow.

Unlike most ninety-year-olds, Bubbles has a youthful, fun-loving spirit. Feather sees her mother in a new light, and they come to understand each other as never before. The thread of their often strained mother daughter relationship creates necessary tension. The pacing moves the story along and keeps the pages turning. Both Bubbles and Feather believe that magic and reality co-exist in Mexico. And, indeed, in Fling!, it does.


Lily Iona Mackenzie grew up in Canada, dropped out of high school and had a baby at age 17. She has worked many different types of jobs to support herself through the years. Lily also earned two Master's degrees,one in English and one in the Humanities. She is a widely published writer. Fling! reflects the magical realism that is the heart of her narratives. Her work celebrates the imagination. Visit her website.

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