•☆••*´¨`*•.☆•• 5 stars ☆••*´¨`*•.☆
What it’s about:
What would you do if your ex-con father suddenly came to visit…indefinitely? Family drama ensues when Nicki’s dad unexpectedly moves in with her, her son, and her boyfriend in this comedic novel from successful TV writer Tracy McMillan.
Nicki Daniels owns a home appraisal business, but real estate is her true passion: she lives for open houses and really knows her way around a floor plan. She’s finally ready to find the perfect house for her son and her boyfriend, Jake, and work on a new business venture with Jake that she thinks will jump-start their lives together.
Meanwhile, Ronnie, a longtime inmate at a nearby correctional facility, is getting some good news for once—there was a mistake in his sentencing, and he’s eligible to get out of prison. Ronnie decides his best option to avoid homelessness is to move in with his estranged daughter: Nicki.
Inspired by the author’s life and imbued with wit and profound insight into relationships, Multiple Listings speaks poignantly—and often hilariously—about the ties that bind families of all types together.
Multiple Listings by Tracy McMillan is a thoroughly enjoyable and uplifting read.
Nicki has had a rough childhood. She doesn’t remember the good stuff; she can’t see it through all the dark shadow of the disappointments and abandonment. Her absentee father has made her wary of relying on a man. She is strong, independent and determined to make a good life for her son, Cody.
Ronnie is a good person at heart, but in the past he was seduced by the siren’s call for money, women and material goods. After his latest stint in prison, he’s remade himself. He’s by no means perfect, and those siren’s still call him, however, he knows a relationship with is daughter and grandson is what he truly wants. He’s searching for actualization along with a job to meet the requirements of his parole.
Secondary characters Miguel, Peaches and Melissa are developed just enough to serve significant purpose in Nicki and Ronnie’s story. Jake and Alex, Nicki’s romantic interests, seem to represent the good and bad choices she has made in her personal life. Delightfully, Nicki’s love life is a secondary story line that is used to show her evolution once she opens her heart and her house to her estranged father.
The plot of Multiple Listings is evenly paced, and the story is engaging. The story is told in dual POV, and readers get ample evidence of both Ronnie and Nicki’s regrets, second-guessing and hopes. Ms. McMillan has peppered her story with quirky characters—many lovable and a few despicable. I loved this lightweight story of regrets, forgiveness and second chances. There are a few hanging threads in this story that I found completely forgivable because life is messy that way; readers who need every little detailed wrapped up, may find those few dangling threads annoying, but I say they should follow Ronnie’s advice to let go and enjoy the present.
I loved Ronnie’s calmness and his sage advice. His subtle influence on everyone in his life is charming. Ronnie’s re-entry into Nicki’s life is healing to both her and her son. She is happier, playful, and less uptight. Nicki’s hobby of going to open houses is a great analogy for the solid foundation she is looking for in her life. Nicki is not really interested in houses, she is looking for a home, and she finds one when she opens her heart and her life to her far-from-perfect father. Multiple Listings by Tracy McMillan is an uplifting, feel-good read.
About the author: Born and raised in Minneapolis, Tracy spent years in the foster care system. After graduating from the University of Utah with a broadcast-journalism degree, she spent more than a decade writing and producing television news for outlets such as NBC Nightly News, KNBC-TV, and Access Hollywood. Tracy’s articles and essays have appeared in a number of print publications and websites. She is a regular performer at Sit-n-Spin on the Comedy Central stage in Los Angeles. She is the mother of a 13-year-old boy, and lives in Los Angeles.