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Location: Vero Beach, Florida, United States

My name is Pat and I live in Florida. My skin will never be smooth again and my hair will never see color. I enjoy collecting autographs and playing in Paint Shop Pro.,along with reading and writing. Sometimes, I enjoy myself by doing volunteer "work" helping celebrities at autograph shows. I love animals and at one time I did volunteer work for Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

Monday, January 05, 2009

The Story of Edgar Sawtelle


The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski.

Hardcover: 576 pages
Publisher: Ecco (September 19, 2008)
ISBN-10: 0061768065

Book Description

Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin. For generations, the Sawtelles have raised and trained a fictional breed of dog whose thoughtful companionship is epitomized by Almondine, Edgar's lifelong friend and ally. But with the unexpected return of Claude, Edgar's paternal uncle, turmoil consumes the Sawtelles' once peaceful home. When Edgar's father dies suddenly, Claude insinuates himself into the life of the farm--and into Edgar's mother's affections.

Grief-stricken and bewildered, Edgar tries to prove Claude played a role in his father's death, but his plan backfires--spectacularly. Forced to flee into the vast wilderness lying beyond the farm, Edgar comes of age in the wild, fighting for his survival and that of the three yearling dogs who follow him. But his need to face his father's murderer and his devotion to the Sawtelle dogs turn Edgar ever homeward.


By the end of the first 70 pages, I was toying with the idea of setting this book back in the tbr pile... but I had a nagging feeling that it would get better .. so I read on.

It was at page 160 when you begin to wonder what it is about the Sawtelle dogs.  Around now, Edgar finds letters from Fortunate Fields that made him begin to understand just how much work went into breeding and training these dogs, but before  the story was about his family, his birth and how he learned to get along without speaking. It was slow and kept being tempted to not go back to it, but for no reason I can fathom I did continue to read.

I made it to page 240 where the mystery around his father's death becomes apparent. Edgar believes his uncle murdered his father but has no way of proving it.

The book is a slow read.  At times I feel it getting boring, but then some small thing is mentioned to make me keep reading.  I did want to know more about the dogs and I wanted to know if the uncle really did murder his father or not.

It is the last 200 pages or so that get better.  More things seem to happen and more questions arise in your mind.  Is what Edgar know true?  How can he prove it?  Now he has to run and hide...  and now you begin to hear his uncle, Claude, sounding like he want's Edgar to stay gone and not come back. Uncle Claude is not such a good guy??

I found those last 200 pages to be what I hoped the whole book would be like! It was good and it kept me reading faster and faster until I finally finished the book.  Because of those 200 pages I have to say I did enjoy the book.  It won't go on my reread list, but I did finally like it. 

The ending takes some twists and isn't quite how you think it will end.  I was also a little disappointed in the ending.. not totally, but I would have like things a little more defined as they ended.  I can't explain it without telling the ending , and for those who plan to read this book I sure don't want to give the ending away.

So.. that's my first book of 2009! Not a bad read, but I hope for better reads during the year.




Blogger Carl V. said...

Very interesting review. I'm glad you stuck with it if only so that I personally could get your thoughts on the book as a whole. I have seen it all over the place at stores and online but hadn't bothered to even pick it up to see what it was about. Sorry it wasn't the best, but at least you can say that your first book of the year is one that a bunch of people will be reading this year. You're ahead of the curve.

8:03 AM  
Blogger Cath said...

It sounds like an absolutely fascinating read, Pat. I haven't seen it over here but when it does arrive perhaps I'll pick it up... but try to remember that you said it was a slow read. I'm fine with that as long as I know about it beforehand. Nice review.

8:39 AM  
Blogger animewookie said...

I've read many books that have had a bit of a slow beginning,or even had slow spots intermittently, but turned out to be fabulous reads. It sounds like I would have put this one down though...I have the attention span of a fruit fly. Kudos to you for holding out till the end:D

11:01 AM  
Blogger DesLily said...

Carl: Well, the only reason I almost put it down was how slow it was going. When my already slow reading becomes slower it becomes hard to keep reading! Thankfully I had questions I wanted to find out the answers to!

Cath: the second half of the book is better than the first half..that said, it is a tome! I just had this feeling that, the story itself is a good one but could have been told in a more interesting way?? I can't put my finger on what would make it better.

animiwookie: LOL LOL ohhh thank you for having the attention of a fruit fly! LOL LOL I actually did laugh out loud reading that! LOL..

11:41 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

Well I'm glad that this one worked out better for you than it did for me! I had read that it was slow in parts before I started it, but I just couldn't read a book that thick that was that slow. Oh well...It's such a great story idea though, I just wish it would've moved faster.

12:24 PM  
Blogger Kailana said...

I have this book to read, but haven't got to it yet. I don't think I am in much of a rush...

1:07 PM  
Blogger Ladytink_534 said...

I've heard it's a slow read too. I'll probably need to get it on audio book (I have no patience otherwise) when I decide to start it.

12:10 AM  
Blogger Debi said...

Well, I'm sure it feels good to have stuck in out and conquered it...good for you! I probably wouldn't have persevered. And as it takes me forever even to read a fast-mover, I probably won't be picking this one up, but I sure am curious about the dogs now.

6:13 AM  
Blogger Kucki68 said...

I kept thinking Hamlet when I read the description. Did it remind you of that too?

7:48 AM  
Blogger DesLily said...

Chris: yeah me too! lol it was a very interesting story.. just slow and long lol

Kailana: I wish I could say read it now but.. it may be one you read while reading another book at the same time?

Tink: hmmm a slow audio?? I'd have to think on that one lol

Debi: there was a good story Deb.. it was the only reason I stuck it out.. but then the last 200 pages were pretty darn good lol

kucki: no didn't think Hamlet.. other than wanting to kill it now and then lol

5:50 PM  

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