Book of the Day:
Stern Men by: Elizabeth Gilbert
If you can't wait for Elizabeth Gilbert's new novel, Signature of All Things, than you might want to pick up Gilbert's first novel, Stern Men. Originally published in 2000, there's been talk of Stern Men going out of print. So when my friend Hannah and I spotted a copy in a used bookstore in Salem, Massachusetts, I told her she had to grab it. Not knowing if the rumors are true or not, I couldn't let her pass up the chance to read such a great book.
The sharing doesn't stop there. Fellow co-worker, Rick, has also picked up a copy to bring on an upcoming vacation to New England.
Truth be told, I can't stop recommending Stern Men.
Off the coast of Maine, between Fort Niles Island and Courne Have Island a feud has been brewing for decades over the ocean that lies between the island. The local lobstermen all want to fish in the sweet spot of ocean water. But as the saying goes, you can't always get what you want.
To Ruth Thomas, Fort Niles is home. She's grown up in two homes, her first home being with her stubborn father. Her second home being with the Pommeroy's large, but loving, family of boys and a big-hearted Mrs. Pommeroy. Ruth knows how to be tough, it's in her blood. When you have a father who's a lobstermen, you quickly learn how to work hard and get what you want. Even Mrs. Pommeroy's motherly care can't smooth out Ruth's spitfire personality.
Determined to rebel against her mother, Ruth throws away her education at a fancy boarding school at the age of 18 and sets off to be a stern man. Earning a spot on a lobstering boat is hard enough as it is, but being a young woman makes it even harder when the local lobstermen refuse to break out of their old ways. If any girl can earn a spot on a lobstering boat, it'd be Ruth Thomas.
She may not be a romantic, but that won't stop Ruth from running into love despite the consequences. The same way being a woman won't stop her from calling herself a stern man.
Elizabeth Gilbert has crafted a smart novel with a dash of romance. While Gilbert will satisfy your reading cravings, she'll leave you be longing for lobster.