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book review: "Our Souls at Night"...

Wednesday, May 10, 2017
...was the sweetest story. Written by Kent Haruf, who would have been a resident of Colorado, I assume, from the liner notes. I read it on CD's from the library, there were only three discs in the box, so it was not a long book. Notes about the author indicate he died at age seventy one in 2014, but was well known (just not to me!), having won a number of awards for writing over his career. Copyright  in 2015, so apparently published after his death. I will be looking for other things he has written, as I so thoroughly enjoyed the characters I met and became so fond of in "Souls".

Two elderly people, one a widow in her seventies, and a widower who lives nearby start a friendship when Addie approaches Louis to ask, simply, if he would consider coming to her house to talk and sleep. She told Louis she was lonely, asked him to come to see her at night when the alone-ness was strongest, going to bed by herself after many years of marriage.

They began a friendship, that had the whole town talking. People, human nature being what it is, naturally assumed the worst: creating a scenario where they could envision the two trysting every night. Everyone who knew was convinced these two friends were sexually involved. When in reality, they were just keeping each other company.

Addie's grandson came to spend the summer, when his parents split up, and the child struggled with bad dreams, doubt, confusion over parent's fighting. Addie and Louis both became very fond of the boy, and had a good season of enjoying his company. Louis got him a  rescued dog, and the boy seemed to settle down, adjust when he established a friendship with the dog he named Bonnie.

There were times when I would laugh out loud, while driving, at the antics of the people I came to feel a real affection for. It was a sweet story of a woman who knew she had a problem, and choose to seek a remedy. It did not end as I had hoped: happily ever after. But I guess when you go into a relationship in your seventies, you know from the get-go, there will not be a lot of time for that. You will have to read it, no spoiler here.

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