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by D.S. Marquis

412 pages
Two women tackle the challenges of earning, loving, and learning over two years on and off a Florida college campus, alongside Reagan era news events, when a too-good-for-true opportunity could determine who gets educated and who gets exploited.

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Category: Memoir
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About the Book
A mix of grit and vulnerability, Lynette Autry and Marie Martinez strike out on their own in Floridaís capital city to reinvent themselves, when a late-night serendipitous meeting sparks their unlikely friendship. Are their past choices indicative of their future? Or are their reckless lifestyles behind them? Guys and grades, sex and drugs, money and love. Will they find their way through it all?

Socializing in person is their norm. They canít rely on electronic communication to make friends or find jobs, so these two first generation college women show up, leaving their tumultuous pasts behind in search of new career opportunities.

Lynette Autry, on the brink of a new life, moves into the projects, registers for school, and finds a job bartending at the airport. Balancing it all drives her to despondency, until a late-night serendipitous meeting with nurse and pre-med student, Marie Martinez, whose friendliness is contagious. Youthful follies ensue. Marie falls prey to a too-good-for-true-opportunity. And together with Dillan, a piano playing aircraft mechanic and Fr. Juan, a Catholic parish diaconate, they become part of the spirit of a larger community, when adversity changes to resilience. And helping each other, laughter, love, and self-acceptance prevail.

This near-miss story is a testimony to the idiom, If you canít be good, be careful. And to the cultures of college campuses, new adults, airlines, restaurants, bars, drugs, survivors, nonconformists, scamming, females, individuality, the 80ís, disabled learners, Catholics, Latinos, Caucasians, Liberals, and to the declaration of reinventing yourself.

A candidly insightful nonfiction narrative told with curiosity and understanding about the power of helping each other, Of School and Women is based on Marquisí experiences during her early twenties from 1985-1987, when she lived at the Alumni Village housing project, attended Florida State University, and bartended at the Tallahassee Airport Lounge.


"Well written and suspenseful story based on real life events that took me back in time and captured my attention from the very beginning with lovable characters, who come to life and blended beautifully together. Sensitive subjects in the book are addressed with great thought and care, that were not only topical in the 80s, but that are also prevalent today."
- Erika Crosse, Author
"Without the crazy hair, this book has a genuine 80s vibe and music references that will get you in the groove! Beautifully written friendship story about facing your anxiety regarding adulting. It's about empowerment, forgiveness, and friends being each other's missing puzzle piece. A quote from the book that resonated with me is 'If you can't be good, be careful.' Itís simple and true."
- Paula C. Deckard, Author
"Two years in the life of an undergrad! Compelling! A real page turner! You will laugh out loud and feel like crying. Highly recommended!"
- K.N.



About the Author
D.S. Marquis grew up and was educated in the United States. She moved a lot while growing up, living on the East and West Coast, and down South. Marquis has worked as a Property Manager, Teacher, and Paralegal, while raising a family, and writing and researching Of School and Women.



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