Thursday, April 24, 2008

Abide with me: a novel by Elizabeth Strout (2007)

This is a bittersweet novel of a pastor dealing with the death of his wife. His wife was not really "cut out" to be a pastor's wife, and she struggled with that role - and their marriage suffered because they didn't know how to look honestly at their struggles/challenges. And learning to look honestly at others and one's self is what the book captures best. It also conveys well the sense of life being puzzling.

It's a bit of the "academy award" winning, very deep kind of book - and has a significant focus on feelings. I tend to appreciate faster moving books - and ones where there is less sadness in the pages of things gone wrong. There is hope in the book and winsome humour, nonetheless, and I'd definitely recommend it.

1 comment:

Cindy said...

I'd say this is one of the best, most honest portrayals of pastor/parish relationships that I've ever read. I think the author did a really good job of showing how ordinary people can make a real mess of things, but also how there can be healing in those situations. I loved the book, and would highly recommend it to anyone, but especially pastors and their spouses.