Monday, February 02, 2009

a good read


On browsing the stacks of newish arrivals at the local library on Friday I found Home by Marilynne Robinson (this is the same author who wrote Gilead -- one of my favorite novels.) Of course I signed it out.

Gilead is a much-acclaimed book about an old minister, Ames, who lives in the town of Gilead. In it he thinks back over the life he's lived. It's a gentle and thoughtful story of family, friends, faith and forgiveness. Gilead is one book I will keep in my collection in order to reread.

Home covers the same time-frame and events, but is told from the viewpoint of Glory, Ames' best friend Boughton's daughter. It deals with the homecoming of Boughton's prodigal son Jack.

What makes these books so special is author Marilynne Robinson's ability to flesh out the subtleties and intricacies of relationships and show how present interactions have their roots in the past. It's beautiful, perceptive writing.

The only downside is the little red sticker on the front of the book. It says "Bestseller Express Loan 7 days" and, in case I'm tempted to keep it longer, "Overdue fine $1 per day." Ouch! I have only five more days; not much for a slow reader like I. I'd better get reading.

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