The Land of Decoration by Grace McCleen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A heart rending story of a very religious father, raising his 10 year old daughter alone, preparing them for the soon to be end of the world. Their world is centered on going to religious meetings, going door-to-door to tell others of their beliefs and daily Bible readings.
Judith is so enthralled with this life, that she copes by making what she calls "The Land of Decoration" in her bedroom. She crafts scenes and people and events out of the cast off bits and pieces of life. She believes that she can make miracles happen and has conversations with God. It was not clear to me if she really heard God speak or if it was in her mind.
Due to their beliefs, Judith is ridiculed at school by a hateful classmate and what starts out as taunts soon lead to more dangerous acts by he and his friends. All the while, the father is working hard at his job, where there is a strike and he continues working with grave results.
Rather harrowing to read, with many sad events. But, Judith retains her faith and in the end, although her father has seemed to lose his, I had the impression that he would capture it again. The story inspires me to consider my own faith and what I would be willing to do for it if challenged.
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