Happy Thursday, everyone! Here’s my list of books I read this week: (This post contains affiliate links, marked with ($). If you click our link and decide to buy that product or even go on to buy something else we haven’t recommended, Amazon will pay us a small commission for it at no additional cost to you.)
And the winner is…………..
Before I talk about this amazingly wonderful book, I just want to say a word about Book Uncle and Me. It is a fantastic book for 2nd-5th graders, set in India and written by an Indian writer. The only problem is, from what I can tell, you can’t get it in the US! (The links I put above are to GoodReads and the author’s website.) This is so frustrating to me. I want to recommend it to American parents who are trying to give their children a global worldview, but they can’t get it there. Frustrating. So, maybe someday soon, I’ll review that book because it really is good, but I want to do some more research and see if I can’t find out how American readers can get a hold of it.
Now, on to this absolutely fantastic book I read this week, Goodness & Mercy: a novel($) by Patti Hill. A little over a week ago, my shepherd’s wife facebook messaged me, asking if I would like to borrow a great book she’d just finished. (This is my FAVORITE kind of friend, by the way! :)) She further solidified her place as one of my favorite people on the planet by not telling me a single thing about the book! She just sent it over. I finished up the one I was reading and started this one immediately. Boy, was I glad! What. a. treat.
This is seriously the best book I’ve read all year. It is so well written, very literary in style, and explores deep themes of life and knowing God without being preachy or claiming to have all the answers. It is set in the year 1944, when World War 2 consumed the lives of Americans. The story is fresh and unique and not at all predictable. There are some moments when you’re literally holding your breath in fear for the characters as well as a number of laugh-out-loud moments. It’s a great adventure coming-of-age story with some history and some mystery and only a hint of romance.
It is told by a variety of characters, in a similar format to Kingsolver’s The Poisonwood Bible($) (which I have a love/hate relationship with – I think it’s amazingly well-written but I hated the story. This book, on the other hand, was amazing well-written, and I loved the story!) The characters in the story are unique, not cookie-cutter at all. The ones who tell the story are 16-year old Lucy and her sister, 8-year old Mercy, and there are letters interspersed from 18-year old Pete, a soldier in the Pacific, as well as letters reminiscing about the events of the story 50 years later from Lucy and Mercy’s aunt Ada. It sounds complicated, but it works so well!
Other characters that will capture your imagination include Ada’s mother-in-law, the children’s parents, the German POWs who come to help with the harvest, and even the two dogs. This is a book I plan to read again and again. I raved about it so much that both my husband and my 8-year old daughter, a very strong reader, decided to read it. They’re both about half-way through and are loving it as well. I really appreciate that it’s clean enough for my 8-year old to enjoy with themes she can understand to some extent at her level while being really deep so that my husband and I enjoy talking about it as well, both with and without her. It’s making for some really fun conversations at the dinner table as we get to experience the story from her point of view. Very different details and characters stand out to her than to us, and it’s been a fun new way to get to know her heart a little better.
All this to say, whether you’re young or old, male or female, religious or not, go get this book! You won’t regret it!