This is my book of the week. To qualify as favorite it must be a book I can’t bear to put down. I was reading this one when I shouldn’t be…that qualifies.
The thing I like about Charles Martin’s books; his characters meet life head on, with what we call these days, emotional intelligence. Stuff happens, there are misunderstandings and disagreements, but they handle them like adults.
Most of his stories are filled with the hard places of life and I think this appeals to us as readers because we see our lives reflected in his stories, we need something deeper and he gives it to us. Watching the way his characters face a dilemma helps us see possibilities in our own situation.
On the downside, he includes a lot of detail that I struggle with at times. I’m not sure whether this is because I am lazy in doing the work needed to see the picture he’s painting, or if my mind doesn’t think in a way that words can paint a picture. It’s probably a bit of both. In spite of this I still feel compelled to read his stories.
If you are not familiar with Charles Martin and you like a story you can chew on, check out one of his books.
and now for the rest of this weeks books
The Gondola Maker – Laura Morelli …. This was my next favorite book this week. It’s set in 16th century Venice and is about a family of traditional gondola makers. Luca figures his father has his life mapped out for him in the family business until a disagreement turns tragic and the course of his life is drastically changed. This was a gripping tale hard to put down.
It also makes you rethink the advantages and freedoms we enjoy in this day and age. Rules of the day said you were to paint your gondola in drab colors with little-to-no other adornments. Bright colours and flashy embellishments were considered excessive and prideful and meant the owner would be fined. This is an important part of the story. Of more general impact though; children/offspring were expected to follow the father’s wishes about occupation and marriage choices, with no regard for their wants or wishes. There were restrictions on clothing choices, as well as free time and movement. Women were denied most of the freedoms and privileges we enjoy today. This lack of freedom stands out in a greater way when we hear of today’s freedom demands. Reading historical fiction on a widespread basis might be a good thing to bring our priorities back in to focus.
Refuge on Crescent Hill – Melanie Dobson … another novel based in history. The mansion has been in the family for 150 years and there are rumors of ghosts, underground railways, and buried treasure. Camden returns determined to see her grandmother only to find she has passed away. Unsettling things keep happening, and it seems other people are trying to claim what is hers. This was a page turner.
Good books have been scarce this week, I started several others but couldn’t seem to get in to them. Not sure if it’s me or the books. I’ll give it a few days and try again.
I hope your week has gone well and it’s been a good one.