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Here is a book that is absolutely addictive reading and a joy to bring into one’s life.
The walk to paradise garden is of course the walk of life itself — of a life, lives, well lived: about the shape of two entire lives from young adulthood onward. From a battlefield in World War I to the board room of a major corporation in Chicago in the 1960s, we follow John and Evie, two intelligent people of no exceptional talent but courage and a capacity for love, not only for each other but for those wh
I first saw this book when it was featured on Authonomy, Harper Collins’ website for writers to submit their work and get feedback, and maybe get lucky and published. I don’t remember now how I stumbled on it, but it was lucky I did. Almost everything on that site is pretty terrible, as could be expected. But I started to read Walk to Paradise Garden, and before I knew it, I was five chapters in. It was probably the only book among the many on that site that I actually read from the beginning to
The language is enchanting, the characters engaging, the settings realistic and interesting. I was especially pleased by the author’s evident respect for pre-Revolutionary Russia. Not to give too much away, but there is one Russian character in the novel in particular that reminded me of what I have always imagined my grandmother or great-aunt to be like in their youth – the wistful Russian lady in unwilling exile. Beautiful!
Perhaps what I like most about this work is how decent the people are. So much fiction focuses on the absolute dregs of humanity, as if they are somehow more interesting than a good person. Nothing like that here. Here we have true philanthropists, people who are genuinely interested in the plight of their fellow man. Even when inevitable tragedy strikes, they all manage to stay true to their decency, to their essential goodness. I didn’t expect it, and it was truly lovely.
Oh, and the romance! The love story at the center of this tale is just perfect. Thank you to the author for such a pleasant read.