Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I know that life is a miracle and that life is full of miracles, but this book goes way beyond that. Jeremiah Land can walk on air and heal with his touch, but for some reason he has not healed his severely asthmatic son Reuben. There's also a loaves-and-fishes-type incident, and frankly, this is too much hocus-pocus for me; I'm reminded of Richard Bach's Illusions. When Jeremiah's older son Davy busts out of prison for murdering the town bullies, his father and siblings set out for the Badlands to look for Davy in an Airstream that was bequeathed to them. They encounter a Fed who's also on Davy's trail, and Roxanna, a widow who shelters the family during a snowstorm. It wasn't clear to me whether Jeremiah was divorced from his first wife, who abandoned him and the kids when Jeremiah chucked med school in favor of becoming a janitor, due to, you guessed it, a miracle. Anyway, it's no surprise that Roxanna becomes Jeremiah's love interest and a surrogate mother to his children. My favorite thing in the book, by far, is Jeremiah's daughter Swede's epic poem about a man named Sundown who is chasing a bandit named Valdez. It seemed to me to be a bit beyond the capability of a 9-year-old, but that's just a small miracle, compared to all the rest. Given that her brother becomes an outlaw himself, she starts to sympathize with Valdez. The poetry dwindles, though, as the book goes on, and I was disappointed about that. Several people had recommended this book to me, but it was just too predictable and mushy for my taste.
Amazon: 4.5 stars (448 reviews)
Barnes & Noble: 4 stars (146 reviews)

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