One of the great pleasures of volunteering for the Florida Heritage Book Festival is reading books and selecting authors for the Festival. Two books with unusual titles and an author with an unusual name came across my desk. The Breakup Doctor and Bedside Manners by Phoebe Fox caught my attention and turned out to be nothing I expected.
The books were based on stories of broken relationships. I thought it was “chick lit,” but the stories were so real I felt I knew the characters. The question I asked Fox in a phone interview was, “Are you Brook Lyn Ogden (the lead character).” Fox answered that she indeed had the breakup problems. She did not, however, start writing breakup columns until after her first book sold. She now has written a third book called Heart Conditions and is working on a fourth called Out of Practice. She also writes a breakup column for Huffington Post.
I don’t think many men would read these books – but I challenge any male readers of this paper to try it. The reality in the stories makes anyone want to look at his or her own relationships.
As Brook Ogden goes a bit crazy after being left at the altar and then unceremoniously dumped by her rebound lover, she finds she is vulnerable. After a drunken night and getting a tattoo that said nasty things about men, she realizes she has to gain control.
Her venture into helping others includes group sessions with people with all kinds of problems, including men.
Each situation rings true and each person mirrors the reader in one form or another.
Fox said people always tell her their stories and she uses them for future books. I would make a bet that anyone reading her books has a story.
Phoebe Fox will be available at the Florida Heritage Book Festival Saturday, Sept.26, at the Ringhaver Student Center at Flagler College. There will be a ticketed event on Friday, Sept. 25. Visit www.fhbookfest.com for more information.
Phoebe Fox now lives in Austin Texas, but her books are based in Ft. Myers. She is happily married and loves to visit Florida.