This week I talked to Gwyn Hyman Rubio, bestselling author of Icy Sparks and The Woodsman's Daughter about her next novel Love & Ordinary Creatures. The release of this anticipated novel also marks the anniversary of her father, Mac Hyman's 1954 novel, No Time For Sergeants, a military satire which launched the career of Andy Griffith, and became a movie.
It is no wonder that the beautifully written book, Love & Ordinary Creatures, speaks of family and love. Intriguing characters who make us laugh and cry as they learn what will work and that which will never work in love and life. When I finished the novel, one word came to me again and again -- precious.
Love & Ordinary Creatures is set in the early 1990s on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina. It tells of the powerful and often surprising human animal connections, transcending species, and explores the way we connect with our environment, its creatures, and one another. It's a tangled tale of a complex young chef, Clarissa, the creatures she loves and the one she chooses. When a stranger arrives in Clarissa's life, he threatens the good life she has built for herself and her beloved pet. The story is brilliantly told through the eyes of Clarissa's parrot -- the young captive Australian Cockatoo, Caruso, and sweeps the reader up into a gripping tale of the human condition and the deeper meanings of love, life and sacrifice.
Its layers examines some core themes. Rubio says "this is not a political novel," and hopes Love & Ordinary Creatures will be a message of selfless love to inspire many things including the protection of our future environment.
Love & Ordinary Creatures is not merely about protecting and saving what we have, but in the tradition of all good literature, it helps readers grow and live as thoughtful, loving creatures.
This fall, the prestigious small press, Ashland Creek Press, gives us Love & Ordinary Creatures -- a richly told tale of grace, heartbreak and redemption. One of those grand 'You Gotta Read This' books to gift to others. It will leave you thinking long after the last page -- a precious book that will change you.
Other grand books to fall into this season:
Citizen Creek, Lalita Tademy
Death of A Dog Whisperer, Laurien Berenson
Devil In The Deadline, LynDee Walker
Fourth Of July Creek, Smith Henderson
Gray Mountain, John Grisham
Life Is Sweet, Elizabeth Bass
Orphan Train; A Novel (Special Hardcover edition), Christina Baker Kline
Queen Sugar, Natalie Baszile
Saint Monkey, Jacinda Townsend
The Red Lily Crown, Elizabeth Loupas
The Secret Place (Dublin Murder Squad), Tana French