This rom-com novel is written by this Weekly Indie Word Slinger–CeCe Osgood. The Divorced Not Dead Workshop is a humorous and insightful look at the weary world of the divorced yet hopeful heart. Considering that 50% of marriages in America end in the marriage crapper this book is not only relevant but more than likely easily relatable for many. If only more of us were inspired by alcohol to have ideas for workshops to de-suckify men instead of keying their cars and slinging eggs at their houses. I guess this is what separate the women from the girls doing community service–of course I’ve never hid from an ex under a table at the market, Ms. Bing.
Dorsey Bing is an idea woman. She is constantly coming up with new ideas but her follow through is in the negatives. Pilar and Mimi, her two besties, are rather spent by her lack of ambition regarding her inspired notions. When she drunkenly comes up with the idea for The Divorced Not Dead Workshop and rattles off all the finer points of the enterprise they aren’t only impressed, they believe that this is something they can’t let her sweep under the rug. Pilar, who is an event organizer, runs with the planning of the workshop and just doesn’t allow Dorsey the chance to bail on it. Before Dorsey knows what has happened she is on the cruise ship where her family will be celebrating a wedding, Pilar is absent and she is faced with heading The Divorced Not Dead Workshop alone. She is blindsided, unprepared, feeling unqualified, ineffectual and knows that if she fails she is going to ruin Pilar as well.
Through the course of the cruise and the workshop Dorsey and the others in the workshop begin to become a close unit and through their self discovery they find they have many commonalities that help them form bonds with one another. The Dead Not Divorced Workshop’s purpose is to teach them self awareness so that they might learn why they make the choices that bring them to select the sort of people who may not be compatible with them again and again. Not only do they become aware of themselves but they become more understanding of others. Sometimes they get it right and sometimes they forget what they have been learning. As Dorsey puts it:
“Changing is never a straight trajectory. You know that, Carlotta. You do it okay once, and then next time you screw it up. Doesn’t mean you give up.”
This novel is an incredibly keen book in regards to the human condition and how people interact with one another. It is kept light through Dorsey’s rather ironical mindset and inner dialogue, as well as her almost fatal inability to move with any grace. Dorsey is so impossibly imbued with slapstick comedy that you will be closing your eyes and trying to imagine the physical tragedies that befall her and those who are in her close vicinity. There are a lot of times when her internal conflict and suspiciousness can be frustrating but understanding that she is an extremely insecure woman who wants someone to love and save her but doesn’t trust anyone to do it makes a great deal more sense. I don’t know if it is enough to forgive the one for her fruitcake allegations and off the handle emotional explosions–but perhaps you can understand the root of her dramatic evil.
The supporting characters are a great cast of souls who make a fine array of personalities. Stewie is the every guy who is laid back and easily makes friends. Chester is uneasy in his skin and uncomfortable with anyone who he meets but at heart he’s the guy who will catch you when you fall. Tara and Sylvia are so busy battling one another that they keep making each other miserable but will join forces to have the back of a friend in need. Victor is trying to move on while clinging to a past he is still making plans for. Can’t say he’s going to surface to save the day, but maybe one day he might find some relief. Carlotta is just one big ol’ stew of wrong things painted into a pretty pictures that need to be resolved, but once you know what’s in the pot you know that a good person carries it and she isn’t just the face paint. And Finn is fascinated by a dove who didn’t fly away when it should have and thinks that maybe sometimes things will happen that you can’t assume the outcome of. He’s willing to change things to make them better and he’s willing to see things from all the sides.
This book is really great. The romance portion of the book is really a secondary “clean” love story which is something that you can rely on to relieve some of the heavier parts of Dorsey’s mental dramatics and also goings on within the story. This is a great Chick-lit and if you liked the novel Grace Unexpected from Word Slinger, Gale Martin–you will love this book.
Purchase The Divorced Not Dead Workshop:
CeCe Osgood’s Web Tracks:
CeCe Osgood on All The Things Inbetween:
Follow all the updates for this blog by visiting and liking The All The Things Inbetween Facebook page. Click the banner to enter the ring!
I’m looking for authors and victims willing to write guest blogs, reviews and interviews for All The Things Inbetween. If you would be interested in taking part please drop me an email and I will send you a thank you picture of a kitten!