Teri Emory is living proof that a liberal arts education does not necessarily make a person unemployable. As evidence: She has taught at the University of North Florida, Hunter College, Yeshiva University, and Fordham University and survived a fifteen-year tour of duty as a corporate writer. Her articles and poems have appeared in print and online publications, and she has edited essays and book-length manuscripts on absurdly esoteric topics.
Teri was born in the Bronx and grew up in and around New York City. She is proud to have been educated entirely in public schools, from kindergarten at P.S. 77 to graduate school at U.C. Berkeley. She has lived and worked in Manhattan, Berkeley, Jacksonville, Philadelphia, and Rome. A devoted mother and besotted grandmother, she now resides in Las Vegas, married to a man whom she re-met, after almost forty years, at her high school reunion.
From midtown Manhattan to a Florida suburb, from coastal Savannah to the hills of Rome, the interwoven tales of three lives unfold in the voices of Sarah, Miriam, and Beth. Their unshakable friendship takes root in a Buffalo college dorm in the late 1960s. Fueled by the optimism and bravado of that era, they charge into adulthood with lofty ideas and high expectations. They were, as Beth would later observe, “the first generation of women who felt entitled to interesting lives.”
They remain friends for decades, trading secrets, sharing joys, and shepherding each other through heartache. Little by little, they come to terms with a disconcerting postscript to the Age of Aquarius: Life—inevitably, unsparingly, repeatedly—demands compromise.
In the year leading up to 9/ 11, the three women, now middle aged, are tested by unwelcome drama at home, unforeseen challenges at work, and unresolved conflicts about decisions made long ago. Sustained by their abiding friendship, the three confront hard truths about themselves and the choices they have made. They must dispel past regrets and make peace with present circumstances as they begin the second acts of their lives.
Second Acts is a story of love, loss, and renewal, and a testament to the enduring power of friendship.