Monday, July 2, 2012

The Lost Songs

The Lost Songs by Caroline B. Cooney, 2011. 240 pages. Published by DelacortePress. Source: Library.
The day Lutie Painter takes the city bus north instead of the school bus west, cutting class for the first time ever, her aunt and uncle have no idea what she is up to. They cannot prevent her from riding into danger.
That same morning, Lutie's pastor, Miss Veola, whispers as always, "This is the day that the Lord hath made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it."
A block from Miss Veola and up a hill in Chalk, Train Greene, thin and hungry, burns with anger. He has a decision to make, and he's running out of time.
A few miles away, among finer houses, Kelvin Hartley yawns and gets ready for another day at school, where he is a friend to all and makes an effort at nothing.
And Doria Bell, who recently moved to the South from Connecticut, walks to the bus stop, hoping the high school kids who live nearby will say hello.
All of these lives intertwine and—in surprising ways—become connected to Lutie's ancestors, who are buried in the cemetery in Chalk. Who would have dreamed that the long-dead Mabel Painter, who passed down the Laundry List songs to her great-great-granddaughter Lutie, had passed along a piece of American history that speaks to so many who feel lost and need hope. Big changes are in store for all, and things will never be the same.
In this luminous novel, Caroline B. Cooney delves deeply into a Southern community. Cooney reveals the comfort, inspiration, and hope its members draw from the power of faith, the glory of music, and the meaning of family.
First Sentence:
Lutie Painter had never skipped school before.
Ever since I found out that Caroline B. Cooney had a new book releasing (its already out) I knew that I would have to read it. Was The Lost Songs comparable to her previous works that I have read, no. The reason I say no is because The Lost Songs is nothing like anything I have read by her before. You'll find out below why its so different from her other books and why I loved it so.

The Lost Songs has to be one of the most vivid and beautifully written books of Ms. Cooney's that I have read to date.
What really made this an enjoyable read for me would have to be, well, that it was a new Caroline B. Cooney book and how she masterfully conquered a different type of book from what I have read by her before, as well, as that she yet again was able to pull me so far into the lives of her characters that I failed to accomplish more than devouring her book till the last page was turned. I always look forward to new books by her because had I not read her (and a few other authors) I may not be the reader that I am today. So a thank you to CBC for always entertaining me with her genius.

The one bad thing about The Lost Songs is that it made me tear up near the end as Lutie realized that she has not been as kind as she should have been, and that she was not trying her best to reach out to those who needed her. It was just sad especially since the realization came a little too late for her to be able to reach out to one who could have used a hand or encouraging word. I am not saying that this was bad, I just do not like to cry or almost cry. Because that means that I have to put the book down till the almost tears vanish and I can clearly see the page again. If sad books make you well up, I would suggest having tissues at hand when reading this one.

Final Verdict: The Lost Songs this book deeply touched me and was just brilliantly of the best books I have read that was filled with hope, faith and a sense of community.

The Lost Songs earns 5 of 5 pineapples.

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