The Angels’ Share

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Three love stories. Two worlds. Six characters trying bravely, if not always wisely, to make their romantic destinies come out right—if not in this lifetime, well, maybe in the next.

These are the essential components of THE ANGELS’ SHARE, a highly contemporary novel that nonetheless offers some of the comfort and pleasure of fable. Set partly in Santa Barbara and its nearby wine country, and partly in a spare, secular, and strangely believable version of the Afterlife, the book employs a light touch in treating serious themes of family damage, second chances, and forgiveness.

Darcy Barnett—a chef on the brink of thirty, with issues when it comes to trusting men—meets Paul DeFiore, a 34-year old winemaker with family burdens of his own. They are so right for each other that it terrifies them both. Hugh Barnett—Darcy’s father, a charming philanderer who created Darcy’s mistrust in the first place—is determined to help them get together. Inconveniently, he’s no longer among the living; no matter, he has two compelling reasons to find a way. He needs to be reconciled with his daughter before he can rest easy, and he’s hoping, in the Afterlife, for a rapprochement with Sheila, the wife he cheated on and failed to appreciate, and who divorced him back on Earth. Along the way, he also meets Manny Klein, whose tragedy was meeting the love of his life too soon, and who for half a century has been hoping to see Emma again—somewhere, somehow, anywhere.

Unabashedly romantic, often funny, THE ANGELS’ SHARE interweaves the stories of these three sets of lovers. It taps into the universal yearning to believe that those who were most important in our lives are never altogether gone; that death is not oblivion, but a state in which people can finally tell the truth because the truth no longer hurts; and that love will conquer all—given enough time.

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