2017 READING CHALLENGE
This year is coming to a close, which means it’s time to […]
Thomas Christopher Greene
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Charlie and Owen Bender are brothers and know each other better than they will ever know anyone. They are able to sit in silence and not speak, yet know exactly what the other is thinking. But fate, destiny, and a cryptic note can change even the closest of friendships.
In this note, Charles leaves the one thing that matters most to him -- his restaurant -- only to Charlie. To Owen, he leaves instructions to follow his own path, wherever it may take him.
On the serene banks of the Dog River, in the lush green countryside of Eden, Vermont, Charlie builds a life for himself that mimics the life his father threw away years before. He's happy enough running his father's restaurant and his only real regret is the absence of his brother. Once close, Charlie and Owen have not seen each other for years -- the ties of brotherhood torn apart by the strange legacy Charles Sr. had left them.
Charlie's is a solitary existence until he hires Claire Apple to assist him in the restaurant. They begin a passionate affair and, in Claire, Charlie feels he has found his reason for living. The two marry, but Charlie still longs for a relationship with his estranged brother.
Years later, when Owen, like the prodigal son, returns unannounced, Charlie feels his life is finally complete. But while Charlie opens his life and his home to his wayward brother, Claire is hesitant in accepting her brother-in-law into her family. She realizes Owen is harboring hidden resentment and jealousy for the life he could have had.
"I'll Never Be LongGone" is a deeply felt novel about love, family, duplicity, heartbreak, and redemption. Set against the backdrop of rural Vermont and the drama of its seasons, it offers a rare glimpse into restaurant life, with vivid descriptions of cooking that rivals the best of American food writing. With evocative and lyrical language, it explores the terrain of the human heart, and reaffirms the power of love to transform lives.
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