Author Sheila Deeth describes herself as a Mongrel Christian Mathematician.
I describe her as a wise, wonderful, witty friend and a talented, prolific, and versatile author. I have been privileged to have the opportunity to lose and find myself in her well woven characters and plots.
Here is an interview with Evie, one of the characters in Ms. Deeth’s newest book, Divide by Zero.
What’s your name?
I’m Evie Callaghan and I live just around the corner on Paradise Row.
Do you live on your own?
Just me and Amelia, yeah. My little girl, except she’s not so little anymore. My husband left us but you know how it is when your kid’s different. You blame yourself… blame each other… I mean, she’s your kid. She’s always there, reminding you. You don’t get over it so…
Did your husband leave when Amelia was born?
No. We didn’t know anything was wrong for a while. Not till she was two, three maybe. He stayed then too, did his best. We really did try.
Are you still in touch with your husband?
Not now no. He sends money and that. But we don’t call or meet. He said he didn’t want any photographs either. I don’t suppose he’d know her if he met her on the street, our Amelia.
Can you tell us what’s wrong with Amelia?
She’s autistic isn’t she? And it’s not my fault, whatever they say about frigid moms and all that. They don’t say it aloud anymore but you can see them thinking it, thinking I must’ve done something wrong. She’s just Amelia. It’s just the way she is.
How is she at home?
She’s fine. I mean, she throws her fits, gets mad, but you learn to cope. We both learn to cope. She’s even learned to call me Mom.
Does she go to school?
We tried but it’s too much for her. I teach her a bit at home, how to talk, how to tie her shoes, that kind of thing. Get help sometimes…
Do you get any time to yourself?
Yeah, Sundays I take her up to church. There’s always someone looks after her then, not Sunday school, just on her own. Then I come home and clean.
You don’t go to church yourself?
No. I did at first. We prayed for her, prayed over her, all that sort of thing. It didn’t work though. Then you see them wondering what’s wrong with you, like if you prayed the right way she’d be okay. I just got sick of being stared at. Pitied too. Poor old Evie with her weird little kid. “What can we do to help” ’cause we’re all so superior? I know it’s not what they mean but it’s what it feels like. I just got tired of it.
Are you a believer?
Sort of, yeah. I still pray.
What do you pray for?
Amelia. She’s growing up. I pray she’ll be okay. I pray… Like one day I’m gonna die and leave her on her own and she’ll never cope, so I pray she will cope, or something.
Well, I hope you get what you pray for. Where is Amelia?
(looking around) Oh she’s wandered off again. It worries me. There’s a predator in the park these days, they say.
Well, I hope she’s okay. Thank you for talking to us, Mrs. Callaghan.
Divide by Zero Book Description
It takes a subdivision to raise a child, and a wealth of threads to weave a tapestry, until one breaks. Troy, the garage mechanic's son, loves Lydia, the rich man's daughter. Amethyst has a remarkable cat and Andrea a curious accent. Old Abigail knows more than anyone else but doesn't speak. And in Paradise Park a middle aged man keeps watch while autistic Amelia keeps getting lost. Pastor Bill, at the church of Paradise, tries to mend people. Peter mends cars. But when that fraying thread gives way it might take a child to raise the subdivision...or to mend it.
Divide by Zero: A community united by family and friendship, divided by tragedy, and reunited by the wisdom of a little boy.
An intriguing and moving novel about a new rural/suburban community in the US, describing how the residents interact and develop. It demonstrates how easily people can lapse into depression and other destructive behavior, but at the same time indicates how small initiatives can have a significant effect. Even the least appealing characters are portrayed sympathetically and are shown to have a rationale for their actions. There is a faint touch of mysticism, but not in an intrusive way, and the book as a whole leaves a positive feeling behind.
October 28th and 29th--Sunday and Monday--Divide by Zero's scheduled to be free on Amazon kindle. Head on over to http://www.amazon.com/
More Links to Sheila Deeth and Her Books
You can find more of Sheila Deeth’s books on Amazon here. http://www.amazon.com/Sheila-Deeth/e/B002CAU8VM/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1