Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Children's Crusade

It is said that the one thing you never recover from is your
The Childrens Crusade
own childhood. For better or for worse we take this with us wherever we go.

In 1954 Bill Blair, a young physician, falls in love with a magnificent piece of land in what is now known as Silicon Valley. He buys the land and dreams of the day he can build a home there and fill it with his future family. After he marries Penny, a sweet, pretty, simple girl they begin to live Bill’s dream. Beautiful home and three children later Bill could not be happier but Penny is becoming restless. The days melt together in a blend of children’s needs and household duties. After she unexpectedly becomes pregnant with their fourth child, she is at her wits end and resolves to find her true self as soon as she can capture an ounce of freedom to so. As the children grow Penny spends more and more time down in the shack on the end of their property. It becomes her art studio and the beginning of the end of their somewhat happy home. Thirty years later, Robert, the eldest and a physician; Rebecca the psychiatrist and Ryan the schoolteacher are faced with the homecoming of James, the non “R” sibling, the youngest, who has led a wandering and distant life. Their beloved father has passed away and the children have to face the possibility of selling their home which years later is extremely valuable. They face each other in a going down memory lane standoff. They relive the pain of their mother’s abandonment emotionally and physically, and are forced to take responsibility for their individual futures. This novel is filled with the grace and beauty of Ann Packer’s magnificent writing. A simple, yet intense look at family life draws the reader deep into the hearts of these characters. Highly recommend this story of love, family and self.

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