5 / 5 Stars
On an isolated Texas ranch, Dr. Lucy cares for abandoned animals. The solitude allows her to avoid the people and places that remind her of the past. Not that any of the townsfolk care. In 1959, no one is interested in a woman doctor. Nor are they welcoming Calvin and Justin Bell, a newly arrived African American father and son.
When Pete Solomon, a neglected twelve-year-old boy, and Justin bring a wounded wolf-dog hybrid to Dr. Lucy, the outcasts soon find refuge in one another. Lucy never thought she’d make connections again, never mind fall in love. Pete never imagined he’d find friends as loyal as Justin and the dog. But these four people aren’t allowed to be friends, much less a family, when the whole town turns violently against them.
With heavy hearts, Dr. Lucy and Pete say goodbye to Calvin and Justin. But through the years they keep hope alive…waiting for the world to catch up with them.
Seeing the cover of this book, I was immediately concerned that something was going to happen to the dog, and let’s be honest – pets facing any sort of tragedy in a book is incredibly difficult to read. That said, I trust Michelle’s judgement, so in I went!
Oh my goodness – this book was PHENOMENAL. This tackled SO many issues from 1950s America, I don’t even know where to begin. First of all, the dog? He is the connection between these four strangers. He isn’t even what the book is all about but he brings them all together and he deserves a place on the front cover for doing that.
Dr. Lucy, a doctor who just happens to be a white woman, faces sexism not only for her profession but the fact that she lives alone and is unmarried. Pete, a young white boy should have all the privileges in this setting – but is faced with an array of issues from an abusive and controlling father to being limited on his friendships.
Calvin and Justin, a black father and son, come to Dr. Lucy in desperate need of help, after facing extreme racism and hate, and to top it all off, a relationship develops between Lucy and Calvin that ignites a discussion of interracial relationships. The whole book handles an array of issues that are still completely relevant today and discusses them with such poise that I simply couldn’t put this book down. I am stunned this book has not received more praise and I wish whole-heartedly that this review inspires someone to grab a copy of this amazing book.
Everyone should be reading this.
This was the book included in the Once Upon a Book Club Box in March of 2017. Though I am an employee of this company, the above opinions are entirely my own and I have not been compensated in any way for the above review.