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Carry Me Home: A Novel by Sandra Kring
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Carry Me Home: A Novel (2004)

by Sandra Kring

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Sandra Kring is one of my favorite authors, and every story that she writes I fall in love with. Carry Me Home was no exception. It is a heart-felt story about Earl "Earwig" Gunderman, who suffered from a severe fever as a child causing him to become "simpleminded". This character is incredibly special; we all should be lucky enough to know someone "simple-minded" like Earwig.

Earl is loved and protected by his parents, brother, friends and the townspeople, as a whole, and in return, he loves and protects them just as fiercely. Earwig's relationship with his brother, Jimmy, takes your breath away, and it is this relationship that is at the core of the novel. Jimmy who always took care of and included Earwig, now is the one requiring the nurturing after returning from World War II damaged and scarred from all that he has lived through.

Secondary characters such as Eileen and Hank Gunderman, Eddie, Eva Leigh, Ruby Leigh, Floyd, John, Louie and even the Pritchards add to this charming story.

Earwig's kindness, his simple truths about living life and treating others (which he learned much of from his father) and his exquisite honesty was just so beautiful. There is no better way to describe it.

There were many hardships in this story, and yet it was incredibly uplifting.

I highly recommend reading this book. Also read by Sandra Kring, How High the Moon, The Book of Bright Ideas and A Life of Bright Ideas. All were excellent. ( )
  2LZ | Nov 30, 2012 |
What a wonderfully crafted story by Sandra Kring. The story of Earwig, an allegedly simple minded young man. However, he may be the most insightful, realistic person in the whole story. He experiences challenges and accomplishments during the story that make the reader at times want to cry and other times laugh. It is a wonderfully written story and I highly recommend it. ( )
  CandyH | Oct 12, 2012 |
I love Sandra Kring books! This book brings home the realities of life during WWII. It's the kind of book that you never want to end and you feel sad when it's over. ( )
  bpompon | Aug 24, 2012 |
This is just one of those books that feels good to read--enjoyable, moving, characters you fall in love with. Perfect for the beach or curled up on the couch with a cup of tea! ( )
  CatheOlson | Sep 16, 2010 |
This story is told through the eyes of younger brother, Earl (Earwig), who describes himself as simple minded. Yet, his inability to think abstractly allows him to offer solid, concrete kindness to those he loves as the novel progresses. He is closest to his older brother and protector, Jimmy, who leaves for WWII. While Jimmy is gone, Earwig grows up enough to protect Jimmy when he returns. A lovely book. ( )
  Lcwilson45 | May 27, 2008 |
Showing 5 of 5
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385338139, Paperback)

The love of family. The heartbreak of war. The triumph of coming home.

1940. Rural Wisconsin. Sixteen-year-old Earl “Earwig” Gunderman is not like other boys his age. Fiercely protected by his older brother, Earwig sees his town and the world around him through the prism of his own unique understanding. He sees his mother’s sadness and his father’s growing solitude. He sees his brother, Jimmy, falling in love with the most beautiful girl in town. And while Earwig is unable to make change for customers at his family’s store, he is singularly well suited to understand what other people in his town cannot: that life as they know it is about to change; the coming war will touch them all.

For Jimmy will enlist in the military. And Earwig will watch his parents’ marriage buckle under the strain of a family secret. And when Jimmy returns–a fractured shadow of his former self–it is Earwig’s turn to care for him. His struggles to right the wrongs visited upon his revered older brother by war, women, and life are at once heartwarming and riotously funny. Their family and town irrevocably altered, Earwig and Jimmy fight to find their own places in a world changed forever.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:36:38 -0400)

A moving tale of the unshakable bond between two brothers, set against a backdrop of family secrets, small-town life, and WWII.

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