Pam L. (Indialantic, FL)
Map to Come
What a concept. I love Harold Fry, the unlikely hero of the debut novel by Rachel Joyce. This novel is the epitome of the expression "stop and smell the roses." Harold's journey is about regret, forgiveness and most absolutely, love. Harold's pilgrimage is reflective, heart -breaking, and most of all about hope and faith. The ending is almost pitch perfect. Harold Fry has something to teach everyone. Brew a pot of tea, sit down and savor "The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry" by Rachel Joyce.
Gigi K. (Lufkin,, TX)
I'd like to read it again!
I was struck by the title first and then as I read the book, I was reminded by so many of Harold's episodes of truths in my own life. Seems impossible since my life has been nothing like Harold's. However, I think you will find some echos, also.
Zonetta G. (Winter Springs, FL)
This is a beautifully written book. Rachel Joyce expresses eloquently the hope and faith in life we all hold close inside. Harold and Maureen show us that who we are today is a result of the suppressed memories and grief and sorrow of our past as well as the small memories we've forgotten. This is a sweet, sweet story and I would highly recommend it to book clubs. I loved it.
Deborah C. (Seattle, WA)
Charming and Delightful
If you liked Major Pettigrew's Last Stand, this is the book for you! The story is heartwarming, and just when I thought things might be getting a little too sentimental, the author interjected a welcome dose of dry British humor.
I would recommend this for book clubs, as many interesting questions are raised about why Harold embarked upon his "unlikely pilgrimage" as well as the many characters he meets along the way.
This is the author's first book, but I certainly hope it's not her last!
Jill M. (Petaluma, CA)
Poor Harold Fry. He was the victim of rotten parents and a tragedy that squelched a romantic marriage. His irrational decision to embark on his journey yielded unexpected results. i got bogged down half way through, but couldn't put the book down for the second half. It's filled with symbolism and life lessons and worth reading.
Rosemary S. (Somers, NY)
Put This on Your Reading LIst!
I never would have guessed that a book about an elderly man, Harold, who walks over six hundred miles, would be so intriguing and enlightening. What could have been a slow moving story, about ordinary people, and ordinary lives, became a fascinating tale of hope, discovery, and love. I will be using this book as my pick for our monthly book club, and I believe it will lead to a fascinating discussion. This book led me to think about life, death, marriage, friendship, religion, guilt, blame, obligation, fame, and so much more.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and I look forward to reading more books by this new author.
Barbara H. (Alexandria, VA)
A walk that can drag
Harold Fry is a recent retiree living in a small English village and has a sense of overall failure as a son, as a husband and as a father. His cross-England walking trip to visit an old co-worker begins almost by mistake.
Along the way, Harold meets many other individuals and becomes aware of “the inhumane effort to be normal, and a part of things that appeared both easy and everyday.” He appears to be walking away from the person he used to be and toward the one he wished to be, the theme of pilgrimage.
The author takes establishes Harold and his estranged wife, Maureen, as characters coping with grief and love, to excess. The author also overplays the group of people who want to sponge off the publicity Harold begins receiving. This section drags.
I cheered for Harold and wanted him to overcome his impossible odds, perhaps because he might affirm my and others need to believe we can bring changes in our own lives.
For the most part, I enjoyed the journey.