Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse by Faith Sullivan

Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse by Faith Sullivan

Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse begins with an obituary for Nell Stillman, written by Nell Stillman 15 years before she died.

When I opened Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse and began reading I felt like I was coming home to lovely evening with old friends. Friends from the fictional place of Harvester, Minnesota.  Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse spans Nell's lifetime from her first year of marriage and the birth of her son to her death in 1960.

Nell becomes a 3rd grade teacher out of necessity when her abusive husband dies and she must raise her son alone.  She struggles to find her way amidst the small town life of rumors and distrust as she creates life long friends and a space to call her own.
She is an independent woman when woman are supposed to rely on a man to provide and support her.  She becomes a book lover and a supporter of public libraries. Her books help her escape and are trusted friends, especially the books by P.G. Wodehouse.
(Psst, I've never read a book by P.G. Wodehouse, please don't tell the Faith Sullivan.)

Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse is a gem of a story that is a love letter to independent women and book lovers and social studies teachers like me.  There is a entertaining and lovable cast of characters that flit in and out of significant historical events that make you hold your breath and hope for the best. My favorite characters from Sullivan's former books make an appearance and I was so glad.  I really just wanted to sit down and have tea at the table and discuss the love of books with them.

I totally love the book cover.  The book cover is amazing and reminds me of the classic look of Goodnight, Moon.

Faith Sullivan writes with heart and quiet strength.  Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse is like a fine glass of wine and a warm fire.  The story glows with wit and wisdom and celebrates the art of the story.   The story of a woman who loves her son and teaching and books.  The story of friendships, of triumph and tragedy, of a simple life in a small town.  The story of all of us.