Ruby Ramblings

Book One Down!
October 22, 2011, 10:20 pm
Filed under: Books, Dewey's Read-a-thon

Paradise is finished. What started as a mellow, dreamy account of a confused boy being taken from his family as repayment for debt, turned into an adventure as he grows and proves himself to be a savvy and lucky young man. As a sub-plot, the book also looks at the growth in popularity of organized religion as the merchants travel from village to village and have to navigate a new set of customs and beliefs at each one.

Information on the author, an expat himself, whose books explore ideas of displacement and desire.

A quote I found interesting, a reminder that perspective is everything. When I was doing archaeology work, rain was the bane of our existence. It ruined sites and brought everyone’s moral down. In this case, it has quite the opposite effect,

“A light rain sped them on, making the men break into song as their bodies cooled. Even the ones who were ailing from the wear and tear of the journey found their old strength returning.”

Total pages read: 154
Related Charity:

4 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Congrats on finishing Paradise. Keep up the great reading!

Comment by alitareads

Sounds like you made a good call, moving onto this book and setting Mary Karr aside for now. Glad to hear that you’ve enjoyed it. And I hope you continue to enjoy your other read-a-thon reads. Have fun!

Cheering you on from Team Trix!

Comment by buriedinprint

Books are awesome
Books are great
Congratulations on reading so much
You’re first rate!

Comment by Care

re: book review request by award-winning author

Dear Ruby Ramblings:

I’m an award-winning author with a new YA book out this fall. Ugly To Start With is a series of thirteen interrelated stories about childhood being published by West Virginia University Press.

Can I interest you in reviewing it?

If you write me back at, I can email you a PDF of my book. If you require a bound copy, please ask, and I will forward your reply to my publisher. Or you can write directly to Abby Freeland at:

My publisher, I should add, can also offer your readers a free excerpt of my book through a link from your blog to my publisher’s website:

Here’s what Jacob Appel, celebrated author of
Dyads and The Vermin Episode, says about my new collection: “In Ugly to Start With, set in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia, Cummings tackles the challenges of boyhood adventure and family conflict in a taut, crystalline style that captures the triumphs and tribulations of small-town life. He has a gift for transcending the particular experiences to his characters to capture the universal truths of human affection and suffering–emotional truths that the members of his audience will recognize from their own experiences of childhood and adolescence.”

My short stories have appeared in more than seventy-five literary journals, including North American Review, The Kenyon Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, and The Chattahoochee Review. Twice I have been nominated for The Pushcart Prize. My short story “The Scratchboard Project” received an honorable mention in The Best American Short Stories 2007.

I am also the author of the nationally acclaimed coming-of-age novel The Night I Freed John Brown (Philomel Books, Penguin Group, 2009), winner of The Paterson Prize for Books for Young Readers (Grades 7-12) and one of ten books recommended by USA TODAY.

For more information about me, please visit:

Thank you very much, and I look forward to hearing back from you.


John Michael Cummings

Comment by John Michael Cummings

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