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Thursday’s Book Review: Eli the Good by Silas House

By: Julia Gelsomino

Eli the Good, by award-winning author Silas House (Clay’s Quilt, A Parchment of Leaves, The Coal Tattoo), delivers a beautiful and compelling American story about friendship, love, and acceptance.

In the year of America’s Bicentennial, 10-year-old Eli Book sits at the base of his favorite tree, struggling to understand the complexities of a number of issues: his father’s post-traumatic stress disorder; his caring but emotionally distant mother; his 16-year-old sister’s developing dislike for the country; the mysterious arrival of his anti-war protesting Aunt Nell; and the grief of deeply hurting the feelings of his best friend Edie.

As the sultry summer drifts on and Eli’s family copes with its own painful issues, the small town of Refuge, Kentucky, prepares for the Fourth of July celebration. Meanwhile nature-loving Eli sits within the safety and protection of his beloved beech tree and discovers something important: “Sometimes just being still is the best thing that you can do for yourself.”

With his tender and poetic style, House’s first young adult novel is one to be enjoyed by all ages–especially fans of his previous novels.

Buffalo & Erie County Public Library | 1 Lafayette Square | Buffalo, NY 14203 | (716) 858-8900

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