Author: Jason F. Wright
Where I got it: Library
Why I read it: I read a review on someone elses blog about The Wednesday Letters that he also wrote, and I fell in love with him as an author, so I decided to read all of his other books as well.
Rating: 5+ Stars!
First let me say that Jason F. Wright is an AMAZING author! He is a new found favorite of mine, and as with all of my new found favorite authors, I will read all of the books he has written. Jason F. Wright is the author of the book, The Wednesday Letters, which was the first book I read by him, and I did a review, which you can read HERE.
This book is about a "normal" family, with a "normal", "happy" life in the beginning, but as it sometimes happens in everyone’s life/families, things change quickly. Luke, the son to Charles, has to deal with his mother going into a deep, dark depression after her mother passes away, and the story unfolds into the childhood that Luke endured. As the story progresses, it changes to when Luke is older, and when Charles (Luke's Dad) becomes an alcoholic, and they lose their tight knit friendship quickly. Luke becomes a very successful photographer living in New York where he is surrounded by the love of close friends. One day he gets a phone call from a stranger, which basically changes his life. The stranger asks Luke to come find his estranged father in post-Katrina New Orleans. When Luke receives this phone call, it's a testament to finding out what kind of man he truly is; and who the man is that his father has become.
This story/book/novel is about finding forgiveness not only with yourself, but with others who have hurt you, or you've lost touch with, etc. It's about finding true love, and one's true self. This book should be read by every single person and/or family who has had rough times, for those of us who have regretted things never said, or things that were said, and for those who need to know their life has a second verse. (Some of the words used here were taken from the inside flap of the book. I tried to put it in my own words as much as I could.)
As it was it, this book takes place in post-Katrina New Orleans. I didn’t personally experience this terribly tragedy, and Praise God that none of my family members or friends didn’t either. But by reading this book, it makes your heart break hearing some of the things that happened. I’m not entirely sure if Jason F. Wright actually experienced any of this himself, if he was a relief worker, or if he had family/friends down there, but the things that he explains in such great detail are astounding, yet scary and heart breaking. You find yourself crying for these people, and wishing you could do something for them, even though you’re reading just a story about an event that has already happened.
You will also find yourself rooting for Luke. He has some issues of his own--needing to forgive his father for the things that happened, needing to find him, alive or dead, and he is stuck trying to find true love. Luke is such a lovable character, even with his flaws, that you find yourself rooting for him from the very beginning.
Something that I absolutely loved about this book, it wasn’t predictable at all. Jason kept you guessing, changing your mind, and would throw in the smallest detail to make you say, “Or maybe not!” when you think you’ve figured out how the book was going to end. I won’t say what happens in the end, obviously, but I will say that it’s not predictable in the least. Another thing that I absolutely loved about this book was that it continuously talked about the love of music. Luke’s father was a huge music lover and a saxophone player. The story frequently reminds us of the healing power that a good song can give us.
This may be considered a spoiler so please READ WITH CAUTION!!!!!! Charles wrote his own music in this story, and at the end of the book, there is a song that was written. It's got the lyrics, and the actual page of notes, if anyone knows how to play an instrument, and would like to follow and play. Also, you can go to www.recoveringcharles.com and hear the song being played. It's absolutely amazing, and beautiful.
This is probably one of the best books I've read this year. It was the book to get me out of my reading slump (finally) and one I would recommend to anyone. I enjoyed this book so immensely, that I want to go out and buy a copy to pass on to someone else, then when they return it, pass it on to yet another person, and/or, the first person I pass it on to, pass it on, etc.
It made me laugh, it made me cry, and it made me want to call up all of my family and friends just to tell them that I love them. We never know how long we've got left in this world, and this book teaches us just that, and that we should NEVER EVER go to bed angry. Resolve all issues/problems/concerns when they arise. Please, go out and read this book ASAP. I promise, you will not be disappointed.