Monday, September 29, 2008

Sufficient Grace

by Darnell Arnoult
Read September 2008

Serendipity. I found this book while browsing through the fiction shelves at the library. I was looking for something to read. I think I must have been looking at the Maeve Binchy books. Nothing appealed to me, so I was just scanning the shelves. The title jumped out at me.

The book jacket must have said something like this:

One quiet spring day, Gracie Hollaman hears voices in her head that tell her to get in her car and leave her entire life behind -- her home, her husband, her daughter, her very identity. Gracie's subsequent journey releases her genius for painting and effects profound changes in the lives of everyone around her. Ultimately, her quest leads her into the home of Mama Toot and Mattie, two strong, accomplished women going through life changes of their own. As the bonds between these women grow stronger, and the family Gracie left behind come to terms with their own loss, both worlds slowly and inevitably collide, revealing a long-buried secret that they share.

The cover was also appealing.

It all added up to a book that I enjoyed a lot. Mama Toot and Mattie's story as well as the story of Gracie's husband really caught me up. Of course, there was a religious undercurrent, but it was not overtly religious.

The product description from Amazon (above) makes it sound like the book is largely about Gracie. She is the catalyst for all of the events within, but this is really about the other characters.

So very good. Excellent.


mrsgoodcook said...

I also liked this book. I felt that the story of Grace was minor compared to the story of her husband. I was charmed by his story; about his learning to cook, and learning to live on his own, and his learning to love again even though it wasn't his choice to be left behind. Arnoult's words paint the pictures of the story in such a way that I could easily see Grace's art, the farm, and the husband's life and feelings. I don't often re-read books, but this one may draw me in again after a few more years go by. Although it is not a "food book" there is a lot of cooking going on in that book...and I enjoy that.

Alane said...

It was particularly interesting to me because we just finished covering schizophrenia in my Abnormal Psychology class. Often delusions have some sort of religious background, and the auditory hallucinations are also very common. I saw that the author's mother had schizophrenia, which accounts for the very clear depiction of what schizophrenia can be.

I also like how many lives this book touched. I particularly liked the story of Toot and Tyrone. It is interesting to see how much we all impact one another's lives.