Everyone in my family loves to read, but my son and I do not get excited about the same kinds of books. So when my twelve-year-old brought home a copy of A Land Remembered and said I HAD to read it, how could I not be intrigued?
We recently uprooted our fifth and seventh grade sons from the only home they’d known in Idaho, and moved them to Sanibel, Florida (a place they had only visited once before.) At school, Jacob was given an annotated version of Patrick Smith’s novel as required reading. For six months prior to our move, I had tried to help Jacob find books outside of the ‘fantasy’ genre he enjoyed, without much success. Hooray for required reading!
As he handed me a copy of the book, (he actually checked an extra copy out of the school library) I shot a quizzical look his way, so he said “Mom, I know we don’t really like to read the same stuff, but you will LOVE this book, and I want to share that with you.” Wow. This book must be something, right? I started reading A Land Remembered that night and from the first page, I was swept away to a time and place and people, with whom, by the end of the book, I felt a kinship and connection. I am touched my son thought of me as he was reading this book, certainly our connection is stronger for having shared the journey through this beautifully written novel.
Jacob is now enjoying reading books in genres other than ‘fantasy’. He has picked up more Patrick Smith books to enjoy, and has branched out to nonfiction books! A Land Remembered has given me much to think about as I put down roots here on Sanibel. I hope the connections I make to ‘natural Florida’ are as deep and meaningful as the ones Mr. Smith has made.