The Dream BucketThe Dream Bucket by Mary Lou Cheatham
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Can you believe it’s been a month since we moved into this place in the country? And it’s taken almost a whole month for me to read this book. It fit the mood for me. Here we are in a town with a population of around 1000 people. Where town is a mile and a half away, and we have no car. So we’re learning to walk to get our groceries, to get our mail (There is no door to door postal delivery), to get to the library, which is only open three times a week. Needless to say, the pants are getting looser. I’m starting to have more energy. And I obviously have a lot less reading time than I used to have. So here we go…

Reading this book was like getting to know one of the neighbors. Here is a mom, suddenly single, when her husband dies in a fire in their home. She’s just trying to get by, the best way she can with what she’s got. Meanwhile, she’s learning what she didn’t know before. She’s learning To do what her husband used to do and learning how to do it herself. She learns what her children know. She learns what she must do and what she can delegate to her children or to her neighbors.

One of the problems I had with this book was trying to decide whose point of view I was reading in. Was it Zoe the mother, or Trudy, the daughter? I found Trudy to be a bit bossy and a little too self-righteous for a little girl. There were other things that were equally upsetting. Without giving away spoilers, it would be hard to pinpoint these problems. But one of them has to do with a slap and why in any world that was necessary.

This book is labeled Christian historical romance. I knew that going in. But I have to admit, it was the cover picture of that shack that drew me in. It looked kind of like my old barn. Or any of the barns around this town. But even not knowing that it is labeled Christian, the way the bits that are Christian are put in seemed fitting. Prayers are used to show the worry of the character. The few scriptures that are sprinkled into the book are words to live by basically. None of it felt like it was proselytizing the reader.

A quick note of the word romance: it is a nice quiet romance. Nobody is becoming insane over their lack of a person. Just two people who’ve learned to love each other and rely on each other. Pretty rare in a book called romance.

I’m glad I read the book. I’m glad I’m finished with the book. It was free when I got it. So I got my money’s worth. If you feel like slowing down your life to a crawl, this might be the book for you.

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