Thursday, January 3, 2013

The Good Dream by: Donna VanLiere

Title: The Good Dream Author: Donna VanLiere Publisher: St. Martin's Press Pages: 309

I borrowed this book from my local library,

From the inside cover:
After years of rebuffing the advances of imperfect but eligible bachelors from her small town, Ivorie is without companionship, but with more love in her heart and time on her hands than she knows what to do with. Her life soon changes, however, when a feral, dirty-faced boy who has been sneaking onto her land to steal from her garden comes into her life. Even though he runs back into the hills as quickly as her arrives, she's determined to find out who he is because something about the young boy haunts her. What would make him desperate enough to steal from her garden? But what  she can't imagine is what the boy faces each day and night, in the filthy lean-to hut miles up in the hills. Who is he? How did he come to live in the hills? Where did he come from? And, more important, can she save him? As Ivorie steps out of her comfort zone to discover the answers, she unleashes a firestorm in the town - a community that would rather let secrets stay secrets.

I was drawn into this book from the very first page and I literally could not put it down.  As an adoptee, adoptive parent, and former foster parent, this book spoke to my heart on many levels.  Although I have never personally worked with a child that has been through as much trauma as the boy in this story, I found myself identifying with Ivorie as she dealt with the small mindedness and prejudices of her community.  I cried throughout the entire book.  I cried from heartbreak, I cried from joy.  The Good Dream really touched my heart. This is a beautifully written story. I was taken aback at the ignorance and cruelty of some of the characters, but they were realistically portrayed.  While the innocence and terror the child endures brought me to tears, Ivorie's fierce determination to help the child was inspiring.  This story is a beautiful illustration of the healing power of love. The characters stayed on my mind long after I finished reading.

Read this book if...
*you love southern fiction
*you love "small town" novels
*you love stories set in Appalachia
*you love stories of inspiration
*you love stories about the healing power of love

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