The Cross Gardener
Jason F. Wright
Berkley, Mar 2010, $22.95
John Bevan was born on a side of a road abandoned by his teenage mother. He grew up with one life goal sustaining him; that one day he would be part of a traditional family. He married Emma Jane and they had a daughter Lou Lou. She became pregnant, but a car accident kills her and the unborn.
John’s dream shattered that day. He ignores his child and places two crosses at the spot where his spouse and his unborn died. Everyday he visits the location as he buries himself deeper into his grief. However, one day John finds a stranger painting his crosses. The painter and John talk about life and death. The Cross Gardener begins to help John heal and to remember his deceased loved ones and most important if for no reason other than in memory of Emma Jane, their living daughter as his late wife would expect nothing less from him.
This is a character driven inspirational tale that builds off the grief of why bad things happen to good people. John holds the somewhat thin story line together as his happiness turns to depression and grief when tragedy destroys his dream. With the underlying message that nobody has to walk alone especially when life is at its darkest, sub-genre fans will appreciate Jason F. Wright’s strong belief to reach out; as John begins to comprehend that he left his beloved Lou Lou to walk alone.