I hear these questions—the latter especially—at readings and book groups. Good question!
In Montana, Lola Wicks is cheerfully light-fingered, lifting everything from a paperweight to an expensive anniversary watch to a Zuni fetish. For my purposes, she’s a klepto because she needed something to hurl in a crucial scene. Come to think of it, she throws stuff around in a few scenes. When Lola’s around, you want to stand back.
As for Lola’s purposes, she addresses this in Montana, recalling the way her friend Mary Alice would ask her about it:
Her reply always a wordless shrug. How to explain, even to her best friend, that all of those people had taken little bits of her, security and trust, hope and certainty, pieces she wasn’t sure she’d ever get back? It seemed a fair exchange.
In Dakota, Lola doesn’t take anything. Why not? Mostly because she’s happy, as happy as Lola ever allows herself to be.
Will she ever steal again? For sure, she won’t stay happy. The woman picks up trouble as casually as she once tucked someone else’s possessions into her pocket. We’ll just see about the stealing.
Filed Under: Montana: The Novel