Nope, not the song.
Sorry, I’m mean. I shouldn’t be such a prankster when I’m about to try to convince you to do something.
Not the song, the book. Oh, the book. The wonderful book.
I’m being serious here: I’ve never read a novel that so inspired my creative brain, challenged my faith, and wrapped me up in the story. All at once. Amazing. Who knew a novel could do this? Why don’t all novels do this?
Fun fact: Jared and I fell in love over this book. When we were in Kyrgyzstan I started reading it out-loud to some of our folks while they did dishes… but then Jared was the only one that continued to be around for dish time, because he’s awesome like that. We didn’t finish the book in Kyrgyzstan, so we had to finish back in California. Or Oregon. I remember not which state we were in when we finally finished. But by the time I was done reading… we were all head-over-heels and all that mushy stuff. Jesus tricked me into falling in love with Jared over this book. But I’m okay with it.
In some ways Peace Like a River reads like Little Britches or Little House on the Prairie, with an almost old-west/prairie feel. Narrated by Rube, the eleven year old living with father, sister, and brother in Minnesota in 1962, I found much in the story that I respect. Hard things. Things that, quite frankly, make you want to through the book across the room because it’s not a story book plot-line. Or, challenging things that make you a little uncomfortable and cause you to squirm a bit in your chair while reading. But, Leif Enger couches it all in a fantastic story.
You’re probably not going to fall in love while you read this book. Unless it’s with the book itself. But I’m just here to tell you, there are very, very few books I consider worth re-reading, and this one is on my short list.
If you’re looking for a good read this weekend or this fall, read it. Check it out from your library, snag it on amazon, do whatever you have to do get your hands on it, short of accosting your librarian. I am quite confident it will be worth your time.