Monday, October 22, 2012

Inspired by Keturah

I love to read.

Shocker, I know. As with everything else I love to do, I wish I had more time to do it. My time is valuable, so it is very rare that I read a book more than once--there's just too many good ones out there. But I thought I'd spotlight one today that I revisit over and over again. I read it again earlier this month for a book club, and am still amazed with how good it is.

Here's the description of Keturah and Lord Death by Martine Leavitt:

Keturah, renowned for her storytelling, follows a legendary hart deep into the forest, where she becomes hopelessly lost. Her strength diminishes until, finally, she realizes that death is near—and learns then that death is a young lord, melancholy and stern. She is able to charm Lord Death with a story and gain a reprieve, but he grants her only a day, and within that day she must find true love. A mesmerizing love story, interweaving elements of classic fantasy and high romance.

Ooh...a dark tale of fantasy and romance--delicious! It was a National Book Award Finalist in 2006 (along with earning a slew of other awards) and was rereleased at the first of this month as a paperback. 

The story is original, engaging, and unforgettable. The themes of life, death, sacrifice, friendship, love, destiny, and choice join together with the most lyrical of language and a voice that would make any writer envious. 

And if that's not enough to convince you, this book inspired the third book I ever wrote (Koa's Passage), the NaNoWriMo novel I'm planning to write next month, and another story in my "to be written" pile. 

Yeah. Kind of changed my life. I can't recommend Keturah and Lord Death enough.

I'll leave you with a picture of the most delicious key lime pie I've ever tasted in my life. Isn't it pretty? It literally melted my face off. Or would have, if my face could literally melt. It was our dessert for the book discussion, and I think it changed my life as well. Book club peeps, am I right? :) (Thanks, Nicole!) If you've read Keturah, this virtual pie is yours if you can tell me how it relates to the book.

What books have changed your life?


i'm erin. said...

I want that pie.

Second, I loved Keturah and Lord Death! Loved it. And I was so haunted by it. No wonder your such a good writer, you can pick out a good book any day!

Robin said...

I can-they sent the boys off for oranges and they hadn't ever seen them before-so they came back with a bag full of limes instead. Wait, wasn't it a bag of lemons and she made lemon pie?
I don't own this book yet, so I can't go check. Dang.

Love that it inspired 3 books. So glad it's back in print!

David P. King said...

You learn something new every day. Thanks for highlighting this book (and thanks for the virtual pie - I'll have me a slice! :)

Angela Cothran said...

I'll have to check that out. I need a good book to read :)

ilima said...

Erin-the pie is yours! :) I only WISH I could write as well as Martine Leavitt. She teaches writing at Vermont College. *dreams*

Robin-So close! She wanted a lemon, but is offered a "green lemon" instead. And oranges are later involved. Nice!

David-Isn't is delish?

Angie-You'll LOVE it.

Johanna Garth said...

It sounds good. The books that have changed my outlook are all harrowing tales of sorrow like Anna Karennina (which I'm so excited to see in the theater!)

jaybird said...

Oh my gosh I am so excited to read this. I love book recommendations like this! I will let you know what I think, after I read it.

And that pie wouldn't last a second in my house! YUM

ilima said...

Johanna-harrowing tales of sorrow...I love that! And that movie does look good.

Jaybird-Yes, please tell me what you think. It wouldn't have lasted in my house, either. Mostly because of me. :)

Jessie Humphries said...

I am not a good fan of Key Lime, but if it's face melting worthy, then I'd try it. Right now, I'd eat anything with mass amounts of sugar and butter!

Mama Neill said...

Ilima, I think you are a soon-to-be-famous, "Super Star" author and I would read anything you tell me to. I will also make you pie anytime you want (or at least give you the recipe).

This book is on the top of my "LOVE IT" list and I am so glad that it was on one of your lists or I never would have heard of it (you know how my library is).

Now.... if I could just get you to let me read YOUR books!!!

Kelley Lynn said...

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor really affected my writing. After I finished reading it, I wrote Fraction of Stone.

I'll take a piece of that pie please!

Victoria Smith said...

Mmm...what a yummy pie! And that dark tale you featured sounds fabulous. And so many books affect my writing. Mostly heavy romance new adult reads :)

ilima said...

Jessie-This one has mass amounts of white chocolate involved. I think it'll do. :)

Nicole!!!! Can I get you to sign a contract stating you will make me pie anytime I want? Why are you laughing right now? I'm serious. :)

Kelley-Have two pieces! I really have to read that one.

Victoria-I'm sure there are too many books to count that have influenced me. So true!

Carrie Butler said...

Sounds great! (The book and the pie.) :) Thanks for sharing, Ilima!

Kathryn Purdie said...

I cheated and pretty much skipped over most of this blog post because I'm scared of spoilers (even if they're not very spoiler-y). And because, thanks to the copy of this book I won on your blog, this is next on my TBR list! So when I finish the book, I'll be visiting this blog post again. :-) And I really, really want that pie recipe!! Seriously. Could you get it for me? Pleeeeeeaase?

ilima said...

Carrie-You are welcome! Enjoy. :)

Katie-You know me, I don't give away spoileries. And anyone else who tries risks punishment of death. :)

Jenny S. Morris said...

Twilight-first YA book I read since I was a teen. Forest of Hands and Teeth-made me start looking up authors online and that led to the blogging community. The Chronicles of Narnia-showed me that my beliefs could be translated into the most fantastical stories and creatures and it could still be loved by everyone.

Nice looking pie. ;)

Julie Daines said...

Keturah is easily one of my all-time favorite books. I read it every time I need to kick my writing up a notch. I did a week long workshop with Martine Leavitt last year that was amazing! Not a lot of people know this book, so I'm always glad to meet another Keturah lover.