TITLE: The Disappearance of Audrey Thorpe
GENRE: Adult women's fiction/ book club
Laurel is a middle-aged, down-on-her-luck woman who takes a job as a caretaker to 90-year-old Audrey. This is Laurel's chance to prove her worth. For the hours her son is in school, she helps Audrey around the house. Things are going well until one day Audrey disappears.
Issue: I need Laurel to leave town to search for Audrey. Problem: I don't want her to look like a bad mother to her 10-yr-old-son, Oliver, or to assume her husband will take care of everything. Even though Laurel has failed at prior jobs and despite other faults, she is a good mother. She can't take Oliver with her b/c he would miss school. A school break is too coincidental. Laurel could ask her mother to watch Oliver. She would feel uncomfortable doing so b/c her mother is judgmental and hasn't been supportive of Laurel's new job. I can't think of how else to handle this. There's no friend/neighbor to step in. Oliver does want Laurel to find Audrey; he has met the older woman and likes her. How do I make sure the reader is rooting for Laurel and believes leaving her family to search for Audrey is a good and wise decision?