An unforgettable novel about the power of friendship and kindness by the New York Times bestselling author of Pay It Forward.
Synopsis from the Publisher
In the summer of 1969, fourteen-year-old Lucas Painter carries a huge weight on his shoulders. His brother is fighting in Vietnam. His embattled parents are locked in a never-ending war. And his best friend, Connor, is struggling with his own family issues. To find relief from the chaos, Lucas takes long, meandering walks, and one day he veers into the woods.
There he discovers an isolated cabin and two huge dogs. Frightened, he runs. And the dogs run with him. Lucas finds unusual peace in running with the dogs, and eventually he meets their owner, Zoe Dinsmore. Closed off and haunted by a tragic past, Zoe has given up. She doesn’t want to be saved. She wants out. But Lucas doesn’t want her to go, and he sees an opportunity to bring more than one friend back into the light. It’s either the best or worst idea he’s ever had, but Lucas isn’t giving up on Zoe or Connor.
Their unexpected connection might be the saving grace that Zoe thought she’d lost, that Connor needs, and that Lucas has been running toward.
Stay is an engaging story from the first page where fourteen-year-old Lucas introduces himself in a first person narrative that seems to reflect the angst and rage expected at his age, but that is extremely readable for a more mature reader like me.
The opening paragraph promises an intelligent, if unfulfilled, main character and for the duration of almost 300 pages, author Catherine Ryan Hyde delivers prose and dialogue that proves just that.
Opening Lines: “Is it just me, or does everybody have a day in their life like the one I’m about to retell? I’m talking about those days that act like a fulcrum between everything that came before and your brand-new life after.”
The relationships felt authentic and as a coming of age story, the plot explored social issues that may be difficult to broach but are necessary to see explored and resolved in fiction. topics like abuse and addiction, suicide and the politics behind US involvement in the war in Vietnam. Hyde’s resolution didn’t wrap up the story in a tidy bow but she gives the reader something to contemplate and I recommend this book for its moral that helping others also helps us. And did I mention that this emotional stay also includes canine love?
- Title: Stay
- Author: Catherine Ryan Hyde
- Pages: 292
- Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
- Publication Date: December 3, 2019
I received a complimentary copy of Stay from the publisher in order to complete this review but I was not otherwise compensated and the above review reflects my honest and unbiased thoughts. Thanks to Lake Union Publishing an TLC Book Tours for the opportunity to read this great book and also for providing me with the opportunity to share the experience with you by hosting a giveaway.
If you’d like to win a copy of Stay, simply leave a comment below that includes the phrase “one boy and two dogs”.
I will also offer this giveaway on Instagram and YouTube. On December 24, just in time for Christmas, I will choose a winner randomly and notify them.