Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Ludie's Life by Cynthia Rylant

Publishing Information:
Title – Ludie’s Life
Author – Cynthia Rylant
Publisher - Harcourt
Date Published - 2006
# of pages – 128

Genres & Themes: Poetry, Stories in verse, Rural America, Life

GoodReads – 51 Ratings, 3.98 Average Rating – 6 Reviews, 4.5 Average Rating

My Rating: 5/5

Plot Summary:

Cynthia Rylant returns to her home state of West Virginia with this powerful and evocative collection of poems. In a heartbreaking narrative that flows like a novel, we follow Ludie from childhood to falling in love and getting married, through the birth of her own children, and on into old age. This is the story of one woman’s experiences in a hardscrabble coal-mining town, a story that brims with universal themes about life, love, and family—and all of the joy, laughter, heartache, and loss that accompany them.

What I thought:

Walking past my library’s monthly display of books brings a temptation I can’t resist. There is always a theme to go with the display and I find it really fascinating to see which books the librarians have deemed worthy to go on the shelf. Walking past the display last April it was no surprise to find that it was “Poetry Month”.  April is always Poetry Month at my library. But the books are always changing and so I went to see if there was anything new that could interest me. I found this little gem and I just must tell you all about it!

This book is a series of stories from Ludie’s Life. She is a very strong woman, knows exactly what she believes in and sticks to it. What I love about the stories are they are all about life. How Ludie deals with the townspeople, what she thinks about her children’s life, and everything else in between. The writing was breath-taking, literally. I remember the night I read this book I holed myself up in my master bedroom while my husband a little group of people spent a few hours practicing their music for a little event they were planning. Reading this book with music pumping through the house, through my little body, as I pondered the words and marveled at the skill of the writer I suddenly had to stop reading. I realized that I was holding my breath. I made myself count to ten and take some deep breaths. Then, I quickly got back to it.

The book has an Americana feeling. Despite the fact that I’m not American, this made me feel at home. I felt like maybe, it wouldn’t be so bad living in Ludie’s world, or at the very least, getting to know her a bit more. 

Recommended to: Poetry lovers, Contemporary fiction readers

Where you can purchase this book:
Amazon - $12.48

Add this book to your “tbr” list or find out more:

Go to the Ludie’s Life Goodreads page.

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