The Story of Arthur Truluv releases today! I was lucky enough to receive an ARC from NetGalley to review. I was not paid for the review. I am an Amazon Affiliate, which means if you click on a link and make a purchase from Amazon, I receive a portion of the sale.
Late fall and winter always lead to a book hibernation for me. The nights are long, the gray skies and constant cold chase me indoors. All I want to do is hover under a blanket and read about people and places that make me feel warm inside.
The Story of Arthur Truluv is a warm blanket book. Reminiscent of Frederik Backman’s, My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry, it is a story about loss, home, grief, reinvention and moving on. Although the themes in the book are heavy at times, Berg weaves a story of hope even in the middle of heartbreak. It doesn’t feel depressing but full of light and joy.
It is a warm blanket book
There aren’t many books that feel whimsical, but this is that rare book. Arthur Moses is quirky in a good way. He eats lunch at his wife’s grave every day and while there he imagines the lives of the neighbors around her. He meets Maddy, a lonely teenage girl on the cusp of adulthood, but carrying the weight of her lonely childhood on her shoulders. She also goes to the cemetery, but for very different reasons. The two form an unlikely friendship and become the family they both need.
Arthur realizes that if he were alone, it would be a grim wait. With the girl, it is an adventure. That’s what being with another does.
It’s also a story about how to care for people who have never experienced the love of another person. You see this in both his friendship with Maddy, but also his growing relationship with his neighbor Lucille Howard. Each of the characters feels ignored or invisible, either through old-age or grief. And don’t we all feel this way at times? We know what we need but don’t know how to ask for it, or we don’t know what we need and keep looking in all the wrong places. The journey of each of the characters reminds us that we are never too lost to be found. And it reminds the person who cares for others, that relationship takes time and patience.
But then he realizes he must read carefully in this regard. People who don’t feel cared for are not always comfortable being cared for.
As the holiday season becomes more intense with a flurry of activity, give yourself permission to take a night off, sip a good red wine, favorite tea or hot chocolate drink while you snuggle under a blanket and wrap yourself in a feel good book that will help you get through the dark winter days ahead.
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What books have you read that feel whimsical? Or have quirky characters?