Trial Valley

Trial Valley

by Vera Cleaver

The three Luther children, who have raised themselves since their father died, find an abandoned boy near their house in the Great Smoky Mountains.

  • Series: Luther Family
  • Language: English
  • Category: Young Adult
  • Rating: 3.57
  • Publish Date: April 1991 by Harper Keypoint
  • Isbn10: 0064470768
  • Isbn13: 9780064470766

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Someone has to care for him, and "someone," to Jack, is Mary Call. But Jack only looks at her, his eyes big and trusting, and Mary Call knows that somehow she must find the answer." I had no idea this book was so old, and I don't like reading books written too long ago because the way of speech is too different and odd. Her sister's husband said she was too opinionated for a girl and no man would "grow dizzy with love" for her, that girls like her scare guys off. She wondered if she'd be working every day, taking care of them, and asked God didn't she count for anything with Him. I didn't like the name Gaither. I liked that Gaither told her he was going to get a place of his own and raise pigs and he asked if she liked pigs. I couldn't believe Gaither left without the author writing his leaving. Kiser told her to fix herself up, that Gaither came to look at a girl so show him one. She was out picking flowers with Jack and saw Thad coming up, and asked Jack for a comb. Thad could barely talk to Mary, got up and walked away without saying anything. You can't end scenes like that. I didn't like that Mary imagined Thad's fancy house and lavish lifestyle, and them having their own wing and "pressed hands and touched lips." It sounded like she just wanted a rich life. How did she go from saying Gaither and Thad were her friends and they weren't "wooing" her, to admitting outright she likes Thad and imagining being with him? Gaither and Thad came over at the same time and there was a definite standoff between the two guys for her. And when Romey and Ima started dancing, Mary said it looked pretty and he asked if she wanted to try it. Of course the scene ended with Devola, Kiser and Jack coming-like usual. It was rude of Mary to think that Gaither would have the grace to leave since it was family business. And then he went and got Jack some water and comforted him, and took him out to see his horse. That was nice, and you could definitely see the difference from Thad, who didn't like the kid and didn't want kids of his own. It was interesting that Kiser told her Thad had class and she'd always liked that but class is hard to warm up to. I was so upset that Gaither came, and it was sweet he fixed all the mistakes she had made on Ima's dress, but he just asked about Jack because the kid was all anyone ever wanted to talk about. I didn't like that Romey said Thad was sweet on her and she was sweet on him too. She had never rode a horse and she said she could die and Romey and Ima don't want to live with Kiser and Devola, and he said they could live with him, he wouldn't mind being their dad. He wanted them to come and look at his building site on the land he's buying from his dad and tell him which way to face his house. Like readers want to read 2 whole places for the setting. And how about having the girl make up her freaking mind about the boys, to do that you might actually want to put them together for more than a paragraph at a time. This was like the third big problem except it was way bigger than all the rest and I was way over it and didn't care what had happened to him as long as he was out of the story. It was high time Mary's love life came to a head. It went on for over 4 pages and I was losing my mind knowing it was nearing the end of the book had nothing had happened in the way of love. She asked who said she was spoken for and he said the day he and Thad went to look for Jack's mom, Thad said he was going to marry her and take her to Virginia to live. It was sweet that while Thad, Gaither and Mary were out looking for Jack, Gaither tried to get her to take his raincoat. Whoever cares about that freaking dumb kid would be who she got with. How about finding a quality you like about the guy other than he wants to be a dad? Of course Mary fell in the river, and Jack for some reason felt the need to singlehandedly save her despite two grown guys being there, so he jumped in too and then they both needed saving. Gaither looked at her and chose to save Jack, which I didn't like, but of course Mary the mother of three approved of. Thad, on the other hand, chose to save her despite Gaither and Mary telling him to save Jack. So, because Thad cared enough about you to save you from the raging river, the girl he planned to marry, you don't want him? And I didn't even want her with Thad; before I even started reading the local boy was the clear choice, but I hate easy way outs. It was disturbing when Jack said when he got big he was going to marry her. He said Gaither told him he likes Mary. Gaither and Jack had looked for something, Jack didn't know what but Gaither had said it's what Mary sees when she looks out but they didn't see it and Gaither wanted to see it so maybe they would see it next time because he wanted to see it because she saw it. Thad didn't even being it up until the end, but his disinterest in her "kids" had him out of the running because if you're a young person you'd better want to be a parent or else. Mary didn't even admit that she liked Gaither, like a 5 year old. I don't want to guess when and how characters get together especially after the load of crap like I just went through. Or what Mary wanted to do with her life. They there was no rivalry between them because they met after Jack got there, and they were only around each other 2 times.

While Mary Calls older sister and her husband vow to raise the child, he is attached to Mary. As a side note, the authors profess to learning how to write because of their love of libraries and their insatiable desire to read.

After her first book, The Nurse's Dilemma (1966), most of her magazine articles and 16 novels for children were written with her husband, Bill.