Wednesday, April 8, 2015

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

I have not posted any book reviews lately because I have been reading fluff. Fluff is what I call Feel Good Books that pass the time but do not really engage the mind. My friend, Susan, recommended this book to me and as the Kindle edition was on sale for $1.99 I thought I would give it a try.

This is the second book I have read this year that deals with walking.  Walking to clear your mind and to have time to ponder life's mysteries. In our technical age it is hard to find a quiet time to reflect and walking seems to be one of the times you can collect your thoughts.

Harold and Maureen Fry seem to be your typical elderly couple. Harold is retired and spends most of his day moving around the house to avoid Maureen's cleaning frenzies. They have lived in the same house for 40 something years, raised a son and yet they find themselves struggling to find a common ground.  This changes when Harold receives a letter from an old friend from work, Queenie Hennessy. Queenie is dying in a hospice and she wanted to let Harold know of her condition. The letter reminds Harold of an act of Queenie's that went above and beyond the bounds of friendship so he feels the least he can do is send her a letter. While out on a walk to post the letter, Harold meets a rather sad young lady who encourages him to believe that his friend can be cured.  Harold becomes convinced that if he walks the 500 miles to the hospice, Queenie will live until he gets there.  So he sets off...wearing yachting shoes( topsiders I am thinking!), a flimsy jacket and only credit cards in his pocket. He calls Maureen to tell her what he is doing and she fears he has lost his mind. But she decides to let him do as he will and she will go and pick him up when he realizes his quest is foolish.

But Harold does not give up his quest and over the 500 miles we come to learn a lot about Harold and the people he meets on his way. About half way into his journey, he becomes a media sensation in England as many suppose Queenie is an old flame of Harold's. Why else would he embark on such a trip? As Harold comes to see himself in a new light, Maureen realizes that her life is empty without Harold.

Harold does reach the hospice but I will allow you to read for yourself what he comes to realize at the end of his journey.  This book  was an interesting look at the life of a marriage and how it can change over the years but  true love is enduring.  I gave it a three out of five stars on Goodreads as I felt that it did drag a bit but overall it was a good read.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like an interesting book. Hope you are enjoying the day.

Terri D said...

This does sound like a good story!

doodles n daydreams said...

Yes, this does sound like a good read.


Arlene @Nanaland said...

Ladies, I enjoyed it but I have to warn you, parts of this book are very sad. That is why I have to read fluff from time to time to help me get over the sad stories!!