Do You Act From Love?

Book Discussion

In Kim Edwards The Lake of Dreams, Lucy often comes off as angry and harsh. She's obviously unhappy but she's not really sure why. As a reader you question the motivations behind her actions -- is she acting out of love? Or from anger?

For this is what I have learned, in my short life: do not act out of anger. Act from love, or not at all. p. 273

Acting from anger is easy. In the heat of the moment it's stupidly simple to let things fly out of your mouth and it's something that Lucy does often in the book, only to regret her words or tone later. Acting from love can be easy as well. It's not difficult to give someone a hug or some encouragement. It's when you really can't quite figure out which you are acting from that things get complicated.

love hate

Image credit: Abhi

I often wasn't sure of Lucy's motivations in The Lake of Dreams. When her family accused her of coming back and butting her nose into things that she shouldn't, I understood. Lucy had been gone for a long time and it often seemed like she forgot that while she was gone her family had lives and they were not the same people they were ten years earlier. I don't know that Lucy always knew her motivations for her actions either, she just knew that she had to act.

It's not always as simple as love versus anger. Sometimes the two are so entangled it's hard to see where one ends and the other begins. As Lucy worked to untangle the two she grew up and found peace with the past. She learned to act from love.

Do you act from love? Or from anger?

BlogHer Book Club Host Karen Ballum also blogs at Sassymonkey and Sassymonkey Reads.

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