I started reading Gwen Cooper’s new novel, Love Saves the Day, on the Washington, D.C., Metro. I had to stop reading several times to blink back tears. Cooper’s story is funny, sad, touching, and infuriating, but always readable and entertaining. I couldn’t put it down.
Be forewarned, though: There will be tears, especially toward the story’s end. But your sadness for the characters will turn to joy as you learn that — in the end — love truly does save the day!
It’s the story of Prudence, a sweet brown tabby; Sarah, the human who rescues Prudence from the mean streets of New York City; and Laura, Sarah’s estranged daughter. The story is narrated, in turn, by each of the three main characters. Little by little, a picture emerges of the heartaches and hardships Sarah, Laura, and Prudence each experienced as they made their way through a world that was never easy for any of them. But we also feel intense joy as the characters learn their own truths about life, love, and forgiveness.
Cooper does a wonderful job of painting a cat’s-eye view of the world. As I read the book, I found myself appreciating my own cats more as I thought about how they might be seeing the day-to-day goings-on in our household.
I need to mention music again, because music was woven throughout the story so much it almost seemed like another character. After I finished reading the book, I looked up many of the songs Cooper mentioned. Some were familiar to me; others weren’t. Taken together, they make up a sound track that underscores and adds color to the story. Hollywood, are you listening? This story comes with its own built-in sound track!
And now, for your listening pleasure here are YouTube videos I found for songs, albums, and artists mentioned in Love Saves the Day.
(The book mentioned the album, Mind Bomb, by The The.)
(Babatunde Olatunji — Baba Jinde)
(From Roxy Music’s album, Country Life.)