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What Rose Forgot    by Nevada Barr order for
What Rose Forgot
by Nevada Barr
Order:  USA  Can
Minotaur, 2019 (2019)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Lyn Seippel

When Rose wakes up outdoors, she doesn't understand where she is or why she's there. At first, she thinks she's fallen asleep while meditating, or that maybe she's dreaming. Her behind hangs out of a hospital gown. Her arms are pocked-marked with needle tracks and she's so thirsty her tongue feels like jerky. She's told she walked away from the Memory Care Unit of Longwood Nursing Home. She's grabbed up by white-coated orderlies and sent right back there before she even has time to process what's happening.

No one seems interested in telling Rose why she's in a nursing home or how long she's been there. Just that she's had the flu and is off her medications. Her doctor orders the nurses to increase her prescriptions slowly, but someone in the unit has other plans for her. Alarmed, Rose secretly decides not to allow herself to be sedated. She stashes her pills, and now more clear-headed, devises a plan to escape. Free and on the run for the second time, Rose doesn't know where to turn without ending back up in their care.

Rose is new to town. She and her husband recently moved to Charlotte, North Carolina from New Orleans to be near his sons from an earlier marriage. They are her family now, but they are also the ones who signed papers to legally commit her. Even her beloved thirteen-year-old step-granddaughter, Melanie, says Rose was acting strange before she was admitted to the nursing home. Not long ago, Rose lost her husband in a tragic accident. She doesn't remember much after he died, but she thinks if her behavior was odd, losing a husband would count as a good reason.

Everybody forgets things. Being a Buddhist, and practicing yoga or meditating shouldn't count as crazy. Rose doesn't know who to trust other than Melanie, so together they try to sort things out before she's found. An attempt on her life outside the nursing home walls removes any doubt that Rose is in danger. Someone wants her not just out of the way, but dead.

I loved this stand-alone mystery. Rose is a feisty heroine and her comments on life are hilarious. Nevada Barr is a favorite author who wrote the Anna Pigeon mysteries set in National Parks all over the USA.

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