Say Goodbye For Now

Say Goodbye For Now: A novel by Catherine Ryan Hyde. Seattle: Lake Union Publishing, 2016. Book Club Questions Guide. 355 pages. *****

Dr. Lucy is a medical doctor living on an isolated Texan ranch who asks no questions when she tends to people and animals alike. It's 1959 and the quietness of the ranch suits the doctor who has decided she doesn't like people much and wouldn't welcome them at her door if she didn't need the money to feed the animals. The townspeople have made it clear that they aren't too accepting of the lady doctor either. Lucy doesn't know what to think when twelve-year-old Pete and Justin bring a wounded wolf-dog hybrid to her for help.  Lucy doesn't think she will ever fall in love again or be willing to sacrifice her safety for another. The wall she has built around herself crumbles when Justin is beaten for his friendship with Pete and Calvin, Justin's father, is beaten and jailed. Everyone in town knows that black and white folks should not be friends.

Catherine Hyde Ryan has written a heartwarming story of love, friendship, and hope. Once started, I had a difficult time putting it down. I couldn't wait to see how it was going to end and at the same time, didn't want it to end. (no spoilers here) Her faith in the belief that love will find a way is evident in this book and the two others I have read, Worthy and Ask Him WhyPete is wise beyond his years and his insight into what makes a true friend both in Justin and the wolf-dog is beautifully told in this sometimes emotional tale. The contrast between the two fathers and the reaction from their sons is noteworthy in the sense that Pete overcomes his family history of abuse and innately knows that it is wrong. Their story spans the years from 1959-1967 and having grown up during that time, it touches something deep inside of me and makes me grateful that I grew up in Philadelphia. Well done, Catherine Ryan Hyde!

I  received a copy for review.

Catherine Ryan Hyde is the author of thirty published and forthcoming books. Her bestselling 1999 novel Pay it Forward, adapted into a major Warner Bros. motion picture starring Kevin Spacey and Helen Hunt, made the ALA Best Book for Young Adults list and was translated into more than two dozen languages for distribution in more than thirty countries. She has won numerous awards for her novels and short stories. Ryan Hyde is the founder and former president of the Pay It Forward Foundation. As a professional public speaker, she has addressed the National Conference on Education, twice spoken at Cornell Unversity, met with AmeriCorps members at the White House, and shared a dais with Bill Clinton.

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