Review: The Good Dream by Donna VanLiere

From The New York Times bestselling author comes a poignant, heartbreaking, and ultimately uplifting novel about an unlikely path to motherhood, and of two lost souls healing each other

1950 Tennessee, a time and place that straddles the past and present. Ivorie Walker is considered an old maid by the town (though she’s only in her early thirties) and she takes that label with good humor and a grain of salt. Ever since her parents passed away, she has hidden her loneliness behind a fierce independence and a claim of not needing anyone. But her mother’s death hit her harder than anyone suspects and Ivorie wonders if she will be alone forever.

When she realizes that someone has been stealing vegetables from her garden—a feral, dirty-faced boy who disappears into the hills—something about him haunts Ivorie. She can’t imagine what would make him desperate enough to steal and eat from her garden. But what she truly can’t imagine is what the boy faces, each day and night, in the filthy lean-to hut miles up in the hills. Who is he? How did he come to live in the hills? Where did he come from? And, more importantly, can she save him? As Ivorie steps out of her comfort zone to uncover the answers, she unleashes a firestorm in the town—a community that would rather let secrets stay secret. The Good Dream is Donna VanLiere is at her absolute best.

Where do I began for this Novel! It disturbed me, it touched me, it shocked me, I cried and cringed and thought about it non stop. Very well written and told so well I was drawn in from the first pages. As I read the Good Dream, my Grandma’s tales of growing up in the country filled my head. For me, this was an instant connection and Donna Van Liere did a wonderful job on her research. I love the little mystery in each of her books and this time I never guessed the one about the boy, but I was trying. The boy developed along so smoothly that towards the end you could hear his thoughts so clearly, from a wild child to a boy that realized there was good in this world. Ivorie was well done also, though the boy touched me the most, I still found her very interesting. This novel is ugly and raw in certain places, it exposes what is truly underneath the human veneer but it also shows how love and kindness can shine through as well. Loved it!

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