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December 10, 2019

Stay by Catherine Ryan Hyde ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

"Is it just me, or does everybody have a day in their life like the one I'm about to retell?  I'm talking about those days that act like a fulcrum between everything that came before and your brand-new life after." (p 3)

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

December 2019; Lake Union Publishing
audio, ebook, print (298 pages); literary fiction
It's the summer of 1969 and 14-year-old Lucas Painter has lots of problems.  His brother is fighting in Vietnam, his parents fight all of the time and ignore him and his best friend is acting depressed.  Lucas feels like he has to fix everything and that it's his job to make everything right with his world but he doesn't know where to start.  One day he is out walking in the woods and finds a log cabin and two huge dogs.  Once he realizes that the dogs won't hurt him, he starts to run with them and finds that running helps alleviate some of his concerns about the people in his life and brings him peace.  Once he meets the owner of the log cabin, he feels that he has another person to worry about.  Zoe is hiding out from the town over an accident that happened years before and isn't sure if she wants to live or die.  Once Lucas gets to know her, he realizes that she is the first person to talk to him and treat him like an adult and he begins to depend on her to help him through the maze that has become his life.

The entire book is told from Lucas's perspective and we really see him grow up during the summer.  He is a very smart and intuitive young man who doesn't totally understand life but feels it's his job to make everyone around him happy.  This coming of age story also touches on the topics of suicide, addiction and the futility of the Vietnam war. This is a beautifully written, emotional story and Lucas is a fantastic main character who works to find his place in his world. This is a book about friendship and love and we see Lucas learning how to help other people while he is also helped by them.

I think it's time for me to buy some older books by this author because I loved this one so much. 

Buy Stay at Amazon

And one more little teaser:
"And it's funny looking back.  I think about it from time to time.  A thing happens, and it's a thing big enough to save a life and you don't know why it happened.  And you sure didn't know it was such a big deal at the time.  But, looking back, you wonder why things work out the way they do." (p 25)

About the Author

Catherine Ryan Hyde is the author of more than 35 published and forthcoming books.  An avid hiker, traveler, equestrian, and amateur photographer and astrophotographer, she has a published book of photos, 365 DAYS OF GRATITUDE: PHOTOS FROM A BEAUTIFUL WORLD.

Connect with Catherine
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina when she isn't traveling. She and her husband enjoy traveling, gardening and spending time with their family and friends. She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction, and thrillers. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on FacebookGoodreads, or Twitter.

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  1. Ever since I read Pay It Forward, I've been wanting to read another book by Hyde. This may be the one I pick up.

  2. I enjoy this author, and I've been eyeing this book. Thanks for sharing. Here's mine: “BIG LIES IN A SMALL TOWN”

    1. I loved Big Lies in a Small Town - one of my favorite books of the year.

  3. I have a review of this coming up in a few days. I love this author.

  4. Sounds like a great book :) Glad you enjoyed it!

  5. i love books that show character growth
    sherry @ fundinmental

  6. This one is on my wishlist. It looks great.

  7. I love when you read an author and it automatically makes you want to read everything else from them! Thank you for being on this tour. Sara @ TLC Book Tours