I forgot how much I love Dean Hughes as an author. I haven't read anything of his in quite sometime, but I am so glad that I found this book at the loI forgot how much I love Dean Hughes as an author. I haven't read anything of his in quite sometime, but I am so glad that I found this book at the local library. It was so touching and inspiring.
This historical fiction book, even though focused on the LDS women's organization called Relief Society, can be enjoyed by people of all faiths. The greater story told is the power of womanhood, and the importance of community: loving and caring for one another. Community works best when it consists of people who all want to give but are willing to humble themselves to take once in a while too.
I cried a lot while reading this book. I took an emotional journey with the fictional small Utah town during the Great Depression. I personally related to the main character: a hard-nosed independent stick her foot in her mouth Relief Society President. In the book she was described by a friend as a coconut: all hard on the outside but all milk/meat on the inside. I also related a lot to many of the other women in the book: the ones living in poverty, the ones living with means, and especially the ones living in desperation.
Mostly this book made me proud to be a part of the greatest women's organization in the world: The Relief Society. It reminded me of so much good that is accomplished world-wide and it brought to the surface of my heart all the good that has been done in my personal life because of my associations with good women.
I highly recommend this book to be read by all women everywhere. I love how Hughes always ties in his historical facts so well. I mostly love how he masterfully tells stories of humanity. The characters in this book will stay with me for a long time. I hope they will whisper to me in the moments when I need to be reminded to let down my pride, to reach out and help others, and especially when I need to try and understand better my enemies. ...more
Sometimes I wonder where my brain is. It wasn't until I sat down to write this review that I realized how the title Cold River reflects the subject ofSometimes I wonder where my brain is. It wasn't until I sat down to write this review that I realized how the title Cold River reflects the subject of the book. I swear I am blonde sometimes.
The jest of the story-line in Cold River is a gutsy gal takes a job as a superintendent of schools in the small town in the upper mid-west of the US. She has never lived in such a small town and so when she ends up renting a house right on the river, the river and its surrounding landscapes are a comfort to her as she acclimates to the small town life. The river also has significance in one of the main plots, but I hate to give away spoilers in the reviews I write, so you will just have to read the book yourself.
This book was a fun read. It took about 100 pages until I formed any kind of attachment whatsoever to the story-line, but that doesn't mean it's a bad book, it took me the same amount of time to love Harry Potter, and we all know how that turned out. I fell in love with the male co-leads, if that's what we can call them. There are three cousins that are completely different yet equally hunky and mysterious. Once the story got going it was fast paced and intriguing and the suspense and romance only grew my interest up until the very end.
I loved how the relationships all twist and intervene with one another; the mere idea is so consistent with small town living, especially because everyone is related in one way or another. I didn't guess the villain of the story until they were revealed and that is not easy for an author to do...I always guess what's going on, so I appreciated the surprise. It was a great surprise and I love when an author can get me shaking my head at myself for not guessing what was really going on in the story-line.
I am personally connected to three subplots of music in schools, literacy, and gaining emotional maturity and I agreed with the viewpoint of the author on them all and enjoyed how Adair wove them into the greater story.
The end of the story was magnificent. I have a real hard time giving a book a good review if I don't think the end was spectacular. It has to be not only spectacular but real to life and feel-good. I know that limits me, but I don't think I am going to change now, so all you authors out there, write good endings. I like setting a book on the shelf knowing that it left me with a greater expectation from the world around me and the end has to leave me feeling good for that to happen.
I highly recommend this book. If I had to describe it in one word it would be adventurous. Get the book, it will take you on an adventure physically and emotionally. You may even feel like finding that Cold River and staking out a home of your own. ...more
Mid-evil times in England were intriguing. It's still odd to me how much witchery was such a integral part of life back in the day.
This story is of anMid-evil times in England were intriguing. It's still odd to me how much witchery was such a integral part of life back in the day.
This story is of an orphaned girl who finds her way. It's very much a coming of age story. Readers everywhere will relate to the girl's story. Our life experiences and our choices among circumstances are what define us. We might as all learn to enjoy our journeys, no matter how unfair they may seem.
I loved this book. I related with the orphan girl, especially when she chose her own name and the choice was Alyce. We all need to realize that we are capable and have our own strengths for our own missions and life. We all need to take time to really think about what we want....more
This is a short story about a Black family farming in the south shortly after the civil war. It raises awareness to the prejudices among Southerners aThis is a short story about a Black family farming in the south shortly after the civil war. It raises awareness to the prejudices among Southerners and the origins of it from slavery. It is a great story of victory for the little guys and what comes around goes around....more
I can't believe I never read this book until this year. WOW! Another great recommendation by my local librarian. This book was written by ChristopherI can't believe I never read this book until this year. WOW! Another great recommendation by my local librarian. This book was written by Christopher Paul Curtis, and was nominated for many awards including The Caldecott. It is beyond me why this book didn't win and Bud Not Buddy did. Bud Not Buddy was also a great read, but this book was phenomenal. Phe-nom-e-nal!
The characters are so real and the story so close to home that I really truly thought it was a work of non-fiction the whole time I was reading.
The Weird Watsons are loveable. So loveable. So real. So funny. The book has a very light feel to it until the very end when the family of 5 takes a trip to Birmingham, where they come face to face with an ugly part of American history: the racism and hatred in the South during the civil rights movement.
This book was emotional. It was raw. It was funny. It was so real. I felt like I was a fly on the wall to the home of the Watsons and to the soul of each member of the family.
The end was perfection. Pure perfection with the most unlikely of heroes. I don't want to give away too much, but once again love conquers all. ...more