Caleb's Crossing Reflects the True Meaning of Love and Sacrifice
By djgteach on March 29, 2011
When my daughter brought in the small package from the UPS truck containing a new book to read, I had no idea that I was about to indulge in a great written story that stirs your mind, fuels anger within and brings tears to your eyes. The book, Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks, is one of the best books I have read in a very long time. It is a story about a girl named Bethia who befriends an Indian boy on the beaches of her island. As you read the story, you are quickly aware that this girl is torn between the customs and religious order of her "world" and her secret friendship with an Indian named Caleb. As the two mesh their worlds together secretly, Bethia's life with her family continues to be a struggle with expectations of who she should become. As you read, chapter by chapter, you are drawn into the many relationships of Bethia from her jealous brother to a possible arranged marriage with a young farmer boy.
Each page has its twists and turns which makes this book so exciting and almost impossible to put down. In the last chapter, Bethia looks back over her life and says, "I am not a hero. Life has not required it of me." Oh my! I wanted to jump into those pages and retrace those written words. Bethia was the biggest "hero" of the entire book in my eyes. The reflection of Bethia's life mirrors back a true hero. Bethia was one who loved unconditionally, forgave without being asked and sacrificed her own happiness for the love of another. Through all the hardships and loss that followed Bethia's life, she did find love and family. However, I don't know if she ever gave up her first true love. She stayed close and watched from a distance through the years. At the end, you will learn that she puts herself in the greatest of dangers to give solitude to a childhood friend and possibly her first true love that was always forbidden in her world. She gave everything of herself with very little in return.
Caleb's Crossing is a book full of adventure, magic and reflects the true meaning of love and sacrifice -- even granted to those who may not deserve it or even want it. This is the kind of book where your heart feels sad when you read that last page because you want more and don't want the story to end! I remember just laying my hand on the cover and sitting there after I finished it. Just needing a minute to soak it all in! This story is a true treasure written by Geraldine Brooks.
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