I’m enjoying a steaming cup of chai with the last few bites of the delicious raspberry-peach pie I purchased this weekend, as well as a slice of freshly baked date bread. I’m really taking advantage of the extra day to have more snacks and deliciously less-than-healthy treats, because it is, after all, still the weekend! The weather is overcast, cool but humid, and very windy this morning, perfect weather for staying in and reading.
I read a book last week that my Friends book club will be discussing in one week, How to Walk Away by Katherine Centre. Margaret Jacobsen is a twenty-eight year old woman who is about to begin the rest of her life: she’s got the perfect job lined up, her boyfriend of many years is going to propose, and she is ready to take on the world… until her life comes literally crashing down and she is paralyzed as a result of a tragic accident. Can she overcome the unexpected obstacles that are before her and find a way to be happy or will this loss ruin her life? The person who suggested this book wondered if it might be too "soap-opera-y”, and it had elements of a soap opera, for sure, but it far exceeded my expectations. I think it was the conversational tone of the narrative that redeemed it: it felt as if a friend were telling me the story of her struggles after an accident that nearly destroyed her life. It was at times sappy, predictable, and totally unbelievable, but it was also honest and true and I felt that certain passages spoke to me and gave me the determination to do better in these challenging times, to be strong for others who may need a little help. After all, as one of the characters in the novel advises, “When you don’t know what to do for yourself, do something for someone else”, and, in my opinion, truer words were never spoken. I think this was a good book club choice, and should generate interesting discussion. I fear that some will trash this book for being too sappy, too emotional, too unbelievable, or too soap-opera-y, and these are all true. But that is not the sum total of the book; to appreciate it fully, readers have to look past these things and see not just the story but the message, a message of encouragement in the face of adversity that could not have come at a better time. If you are looking for an uplifting read, this might be the one for you!
That’s all for today. Enjoy the rest of this long weekend, and have a wonderful (short!) week!Bye for now…