Cover image for Wish you well
Title:
Wish you well
Author:
Baldacci, David.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Warner Books, [2000]

©2000
Physical Description:
401 pages ; 21 cm
Language:
English
Reading Level:
840 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR UG 5.9 15.0 55239.

Reading Counts RC High School 7.1 21 Quiz: 23705 Guided reading level: NR.
ISBN:
9780446527163
Format :
Book

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Summary

Summary

David Baldacci's million-copy-plus bestseller is now a feature film available on DVD and video on demand!
Precocious 12-year-old Louisa Mae Cardinal lives in the hectic New York City of 1940 with her family. Then tragedy strikes--and Lou and her younger brother, Oz, must go with their invalid mother to live on their great-grandmother's farm in the Virginia mountains. Suddenly Lou finds herself coming of age in a new landscape, making her first true friend, and experiencing adventures tragic, comic, and audacious. But the forces of greed and justice are about to clash over her new home...and as their struggle is played out in a crowded Virginia courtroom, it will determine the future of two children, an entire town, and the mountains they love.


Author Notes

David Baldacci was born in Richmond, Virginia on August 5, 1960. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Virginia Commonwealth University and a Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia. He practiced law in Washington D.C. as a trial and corporate lawyer.

His first novel, Absolute Power, was published in 1996. It won Britain's prestigious W.H. Smith's Thumping Good Read award for fiction in 1997 and was adapted as a movie starring Clint Eastwood. His other works include Total Control, The Winner, The Simple Truth, Saving Faith, True Blue, One Summer and End Game. He writes numerous series including King and Maxwell, Freddy and the French Fries, the Camel Club, Will Robie, Shaw and Katie James, John Puller, Vega Jane, and Amos Decker. He also published a novella entitled Office Hours and has authored five original screenplays.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Baldacci, a popular writer of thrillers, now writes a more "literary" novel; the results, however, are mixed. Adolescent Louisa May Cardinal, called Lou, is living with her mother, father, and brother, Oz, outside New York City in 1940. An automobile accident results in her father's death, her mother's withdrawal into a catatonic state, and Lou and her brother's move to rural Virginia to live with their paternal great-grandmother. How different life becomes: Lou and Oz are not only answering to someone new but also leading day-to-day lives utterly unlike what they are used to. Food is heavy but all homemade; they learn to ride a horse; school is in a schoolhouse down the road, a long walk away; and chores involve rising early in the morning and turning brown in the hot sun. But Lou and Oz flourish. Then a crisis arises seemingly out of nowhere. The local coal-and-gas company comes sniffing around their great-grandmother's property, conniving to seize it. Baldacci tells a moving story, and he certainly understands rural Virginia and the people who love living there. Unfortunately, his tale is marred by an overwrought prose style. Nonetheless, if readers can overlook the writing style (and that's a big if), the story might appeal not only to the author's fans but also to readers of coming-of-age fiction. Brad Hooper


Publisher's Weekly Review

HBaldacci is writing what? That waspish question buzzed around publishing circles when Warner announced that the bestselling author of The Simple Truth, Absolute Power and other turbo-thrillersDan author generally esteemed more for his plots than for his characters or proseDwas trying his hand at mainstream fiction, with a mid-century period novel set in the rural South, no less. Shades of John Grisham and A Painted House. But guess what? Clearly inspired by his subjectDhis maternal ancestors, he reveals in a foreword, hail from the mountain area he writes about here with such strengthDBaldacci triumphs with his best novel yet, an utterly captivating drama centered on the difficult adjustment to rural life faced by two children when their New York City existence shatters in an auto accident. That tragedy, which opens the book with a flourish, sees acclaimed but impecunious riter Jack Cardinal dead, his wife in a coma and their daughter, Lou, 12, and son, Oz, seven, forced to move to the southwestern Virginia farm of their aged great-grandmother, Louisa. Several questions propel the subsequent story with vigor. Will the siblings learn to accept, even to love, their new life? Will their mother regain consciousness? AndDin a development that takes the narrative into familiar Baldacci territory for a gripping legal showdownDwill Louisa lose her land to industrial interests? Baldacci exults in high melodrama here, and it doesn't always work: the death of one major character will wring tears from the stoniest eyes, but the reappearance of another, though equally hanky-friendly, is outright manipulative. Even so, what the novel offers above all is bone-deep emotional truth, as its myriad charactersDeach, except for one cartoonish villain, as real as readers' own kinDgrapple not just with issues of life and death but with the sufferings and joys of daily existence in a setting detailed with finely attuned attention and a warm sense of wonder. This novel has a huge heartDand millions of readers are going to love it. Agent, Aaron Priest. 600,000 first printing; 3-city author tour; simultaneous Time Warner Audiobook; foreign rights sold in the U.K., Bulgaria, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Holland, Turkey; world Spanish rights sold. (One-day laydown, Oct. 24) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Library Journal Review

Baldacci (Total Control) turns from political thrillers to historical fiction in this affecting novel whose richly textured setting of southwestern Virginia in the 1940s draws on the reminiscences of his mother and grandmother. After a car accident kills their father and leaves their mother unresponsive, 12-year-old Lou Cardinal and her younger brother, Oz, go to live with their great-grandmother Louisa. Wrestling a living from the mountain farm is hard work, but slowly a love for the mountains seeps into Lou's being. The novel's villains are corporations that plunder the mountains' coal and lumber resources before seeking profits elsewhere. Louisa's refusal to sell her land pits her against her impoverished neighbors as well as a powerful company. Defended by a local lawyer and family friend, her case appears hopeless. The denouement may be too tidy, but readers won't object. Whether Baldacci's fans will enjoy this change of pace remains to be seen, but readers of historical fiction will welcome his debut in the genre. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/15/00.]DKathy Piehl, Minnesota State Univ., Mankato (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Excerpts

Excerpts

#1 New York Times bestselling author David Baldacci has always delivered great stories, authentic characters, and thought-provoking ideas since his powerful debut novel, Absolute Power. Now this versatile writer movingly evokes rural America as he makes us believe in the great and little miracles that can change lives--or save them.Precocious twelve-year-old Louisa Mae Cardinal lives in the hectic New York City of 1940 with her family. Then tragedy strikes--and Lou and her younger brother, Oz, must go with their invalid mother to live on their great-grandmother's farm in the Virginia mountains. Suddenly Lou finds herself coming of age in a new landscape, making her first true friend, and experiencing adventures tragic, comic, and audacious. When a dark, destructive force encroaches on her new home, her struggle will play out in a crowded Virginia courtroom?and determine the future of two children, an entire town, and the mountains they love. Excerpted from Wish You Well by David Baldacci All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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