Friday, February 14, 2020

A Book for February

I hope you are enjoying your day in the way you most enjoy.

We exchanged our Valentine's this morning before I headed out to school. I spent my morning sugaring-up my children before returning them to their mamas. Valentine's Day is always a fun day in the classroom.


I have been wanting to share my favorite read of 2019, and today seems like the perfect day to share this beautiful love story.

"Dearly Beloved, he began. They were the words that started weddings, not baptisms, but the people in the Church were his beloved, so dear that as he spoke, his heart and throat grew tight."

Cara Wall's debut novel is a character-driven story of four individuals, two couples, as they navigate the challenges of life, love and marriage.

Charles always believed he was destined to be a Harvard academic until he attends a seminar on faith and discovers a desire to study theology. He meets and falls in love with independent Lily, a devout atheist with no desire to play the part of a minister's wife.

James, an activist wanting to create social change, falls deeply in love with sweet Nan, the daughter of a southern minister, who will change the course of his life. Though he cannot buy into the full philosophy of faith, he believes the ministry is a way to remedy the ills of the world.

These two couples are thrown together for better or worse when Charles and James are called to co-minister a church in Greenwich Village, in the early sixties. Neither man is the whole package the church leaders desire, however, one has what the other lacks. Nan is happy living in the parsonage and leading the children's choir. Lily wants nothing to do with the church community or Nan.

This was one of those books that stayed with me long after I turned the last page. "The Dearly Beloved" simply took my breath away. Through the slow building of her characters, first as individuals then as couples, Cara Wall writes a meditative first novel exposing the fragility and strength of both love and faith. This is not your typical love story, but it may be the perfect book to read as we finish out the month when we celebrate love.

What is your favorite love story?

Happy Reading!