Monday, July 13, 2015
A "Worthy" Read
AUTHOR: Catherine Ryan Hyde
PUBLISHER: Lake Union Publishing
PUBLISHING DATE: June 2, 2015
FROM GOODREADS: Virginia finally had the chance to explore a relationship with Aaron when he asked her on a date. She had been waiting, hoping that the widower and his young son, Buddy, would welcome her into their lives. But a terrible tragedy strikes on the night of their first kiss, crushing their hopes for a future together.
Nineteen years later, Virginia is engaged, though she has not forgotten Aaron or Buddy. When her dog goes missing and it comes to light that her fiancé set him loose, a distraught Virginia breaks off the engagement and is alone once again. A shy young man has found the missing pet, and although he’s bonded with the animal, he answers his conscience and returns the dog. Before long, Virginia and the young man discover a connection from their pasts that will help them let go of painful memories and change their lives forever.
I can't really express how much I love this book. Now overall, I am pretty sure I tend to rate books with dogs in them rather high, since I am such a dog lover, but realizing that, I am trying to more closely analyze those types of books before jumping into a review. Taking that into account, I still have to give Worthy 5 stars. I have not previously read any of Hyde's works, and was drawn into this one when I saw it on Netgalley strictly by the cover. However, it proved to be a good leap of faith.
Worthy is a book about finding one's self worth. It isn't necessarily a love story, but love stories do play an important role in the book. Virginia dumps her fiance after he dumps her beloved dog out a country road on the coldest night of the year while she is at work. A young man, Jody, takes the dog in and takes on the role of the dog's savior, vowing to never return such a "worthy" animal to such a loser. Jody has had a tough life and has socialization issues, but Worthy manages to bring him out of his shell and reunites him with a part of his past which he doesn't realize he desperately needs.
I love almost everything about this book. I immediately felt a connection with Virginia and Jody. I truly enjoyed Virginia's relationship with her best friend Fern, who has no trouble telling Virginia how things really are in life. She also shows up with much needed martinis when they are needed. The story is sad in places and definitely tugs at your heart. However, the sadness wasn't overdone and even in the dark areas, you could tell there was always a glimmer of hope. Finally, this book takes place in a small-town and for some reason, even though I grew up in a small town and hated it as a child, I love the dynamics of small towns in many books I read.
There was little I didn't enjoy about Worthy. It is a wonderful contemporary novel which I would recommend to anyone who enjoys a good read - of course, if you like books which delve into the deep connection between animals and humans, then you should definitely give this book a go. I don't think you will regret it!
MY RATING: 5 PAWS
COYER SCAVENGER HUNT #58 - Read a book by an author with three names.
BOOKER T's THOUGHTS: I loved Worthy, aka T. Rex. I guess I understand the need to change his name, but personally, I see nothing wrong with "T." Mom explained it fits into the story but I probably would have left his name alone. Worthy loves most adults in his life and gives everyone a chance. I had a few ideas about what he could do to Lloyd, the fiance, when he dumped him out of the truck, but in the end, I was pleased with the outcome. Worthy's life is full of adults who try to do the right things for him and I can relate because my parents love me that much too!
RATING: I give Worthy 4 paws but T - Rex 5 paws (Mom says that isn't possible because he is the same dog, but if she wants my thoughts about it, she better just accept my rating).