Monday, April 6, 2009

The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud

The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud by Ben Sherwood is one of the best books I've read in a while. It's a touching story of one man's journey from death to life.

Charlie St. Cloud made a big mistake when he was 15-years-old that cost his brother Sam's life. Both brothers are on the verge of death, but Charlie is miraculously resuscitated by a fireman. Before Sam died, Charlie promised never to leave him. Thirteen years later, he kept his promise, and they play baseball in the woods of the cemetery where Charlie is a caretaker every night at sunset.

One day, Tess Carroll appears in the cemetery to visit her father's grave. Tess is about to embark on a daring sailing trip around the world. She and Charlie meet and fall in love, but can she save him from living in the past?

Sherwood's novel wonderfully illustrates the pain caused by the death of loved ones and the ever-present longing for them. This aspect of the book is heartbreaking. However, the joy of finding love is uplifting and hopeful. Whether or not you believe in ghosts, The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud will remind you that those we have lost are are always with us and that miracles do happen.
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