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Posted November 10, 2014
I felt this book, in many ways, deserves five stars. It is an i
I felt this book, in many ways, deserves five stars. It is an intriguing story with an unpredictable ending (I won't give away any surprises). If I can say this much, I think the theme of the story is that sometimes, figithing a losing battle is still worth it.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
The story takes place in the fictitious town of Calder Springs, around 1900, in Western Canada. This is a close-knit community, where the Harrigan family (the central characters) has lived for many years. The Harrigans are Christians, and a good witness to their neighbors. The book begins with the devastating news that the town's only real industry, the lumber mill, is closing. This not only leaves John Harrigan (and almost all the other townsfolk) jobless, but also removes the town's only means of survival. As families pack up and leave for parts unknown, Julia Harigan wonders if there is something she and the women of Calder Springs can do to save the town they love. This quest leads them to embark on an advneture, leading to some very intersting visitors in Calder Springs (from spoiled cranks to fugitives!). Each phase of this story teaches Julia and her family a lot, and gives them opportunites to be a witness to those in need.
The reason I give this book four stars instead of five are as follows. First of all, I don't feel that most of the characters' reactions were very real-to-life initially. I felt Julia was incredibly naive and in denial when she was first given the news of the mill closing. Their daughter Jennifer is unselfish to a fault, and exhibits codependency in her stoic response. She takes on her paretns' feelings as her own responsibility, so her own feelings aren't really explored. The only character who reacts in a "normal" way is Felicity, the emotional daughter. Yet her reaction is seen as "selfish" by Jennifer. I did not feel this was healthy for the book to show expression grief and fear as selfish. My other reason for omitting the fifth star is because John didn't confide in his wife as he should have. He didn't share his real thoughts and feelings, for fear of letting her down. It is clear that John and Julia are a happily married godly couple, and love eachother dearly, but they are not truly a "team" until the end of the book. I think if John had been honest with Julia earlier on, things could have come to a head sooner.
In spite of it's imprefections, this book gives me pause to think. I'm not sure if all the lessons I glean from it were the author's intended meaning, or if I'm just too introspective for my own good! A good book anyway!
Posted May 4, 2011
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