Every Waking Moment was a captivating story set at Desert Gardens Retirement Home. Its primary theme centered around the value of each person's story, especially the elderly and outcasts in today's society. It was thought-provoking in having me examine my opinions of the value of these people, both on a personal level and at a societal level. It had well developed characters and a bit of mystery to add to the story line.
My main complaint about the book centers on its classification as Christian fiction. There were a couple of Bible readings and prayers mentioned in connection with services, and in one place it mentioned a character reading her Bible. Late in the book one character announces, "You all know I'm a Christian." I'm glad she told me, because there was very little indication of it up to that point. I'm pretty sure the name of Jesus is not there at all. No character is portrayed as having a life of prayer or worship. We could probably better label this Social Justice fiction, but I don't think such a category exists.
Overall, an engaging, thoughtful story. If you don't want to be offended by Christianity, this would be a great choice.
Every Waking Moment is the first book I read by this author and despite that I usually dont read books of this genre, I found it to be well-written and interesting. The director of Desert Gardens Retirement Home, Miriam, is being forced to retire. She wonders what it will be like to be retired and how she will cope being with her husband more often especially since she feels more like a casual friend and not his wife. Then, Devin and Jonah come to the facility to document the stories that the residents tell them in order to preserve their memories and insights of life. As the two document the stories, something strange begins to happen. Several residents with dementia so severe that have lost the ability to communicate start coming out of the fog and begin to communicate, but only with Treha, a cleaning lady who harbors a secret. As the characters begin to get to know each other, they discover that some changes are coming to the retirement home that will affect the residents in a not so positive way. Will Miriam and her husband come to terms and find love again? Will the documented memories of the residents be shared to the world? What secret is Treha hiding? What changes are in store for the retirement home and can they be stopped before it is too late?
I have read several novels by Chris Fabry, and each one just gets better than the last. His characters are engaging and real, and he is a great storyteller. This book contains mystery and the search for family, plus a unique main character who tugs at the heart. The tension is resolved very satisfactorily. The ending is sweet but leaves some bits open, for me to surmise how they came out. That is part of its charm.
Wow!! This was an amazing story. I have read one other of Chris Fabry's book and was impressed with that one and this book is on the same level. The story of a young girl hurt by a test drug that should never have been tested on humans. She possessed the special gift of reaching out to those who had been abandoned as old and unwanted in society and drawing them out and giving them life. Two amateurs document her life and the stories of the elderly in a fascinating documentary. Just an incredible story of forgiveness, redemption and making the best of your circumstances.
I did wind up enjoying this book, although at the beginning I was not very interested in it. I was not really curious about Treha until I got to the part where she reads Dr. Crenshaw's letter. The ending was okay, but it seemed like it needed something more. Like what happened to the characters after that.