“Looking for Me” by Beth Hoffman is about Teddi Overman’s dream of owning an antique shop and how she attains that goal. Her brother, Josh, wants to protect and preserve wildlife and their environment, yet he takes a nontraditional route to fulfill his goal.
Hoffman has the ability to craft meaningful images, thus the reader experiences Teddi’s enthusiasm at repairing a battered antique chest and Josh’s subdued enthusiasm at mending the wing of a hawk.
Beneath the surface, the story encompasses relationships, loss, grief and death. As it unfolds, the reader feels the wrenching finality of death, and the sledgehammer blows of uncertainty.
The cast of characters delights with their individuality: Albert Pickens, Inez, Teddi’s best friend Olivia, Grammy Belle, attorney Sam Poteet and his mother, Tula Jane.
The book is rife with universal truths. When Teddi tells her grandmother that someone made an offer to buy the crop fields, Grammy Belle says, “Sometimes it’s not what we hold on to that shapes our lives——it’s what we’re willing to let go of.” When thinking of her brother, Teddi says, “The human mind holds tightly to those things it can’t reconcile.” Teddi’s mother tells her, “Never tie your happiness to the tail of someone else’s kite.”
The story is a journey through life, a mystery and an ode to nature. It shows how people’s lives are intertwined, how people leave indelible memories on others and then move on. Readers will come away with many life lessons when they finish “Looking for Me.”