Five of Five stars! Wow, the angsty feelings of this book! I’ve been following this author since I first read her book “The Traveling Man”. I loved it because of the main male character, and the superb story. I went on to read other books and she has become an automatic one-click buy for me. I loved this book, and the only thing wrong with it is that it’s a novella, so it’s short and you want to read more details. The book is about a prison convict, who is doing a 5 year term and about to be paroled. He’s in a prison class to study for his GED. He has dreams of being paroled and doesn’t have much ambitions, just to be able to leave a simple, quiet life. First day of class, the teacher arrives. As he says:
“She looked nervous, but was trying to hide it by standing straight, keeping her chin up, meeting a man’s eyes without prejudice or promise.”
Ella Newsome is the daughter of liberal parents and likes to help others. She tried regular school but found more pleasure helping older people with their literacy. She started teaching in prisons because the job pays more than public schools. Once she starts teaching, she’s motivated by the response of some of the inmates. She’s immediately attracted to Garret because he’s yummy hot and wrote an essay that was full of hope and despair.
The attraction between Garret and Ella seems forbidden; there are many barriers between them. Garret appears a dangerous and violent man, but there’s more within. I loved seeing how Garret came out of his personal prison and opened up to chances and hope. I loved that even though there’s angst in this book, there’s also motivation to be the best person you can be. Ella was a generous and giving character, truthful and joyful. The transition and the journey were a great read, too bad it was so short!