cover image Take Me with You

Take Me with You

Catherine Ryan Hyde. Lake Union, $14.95 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-1-4778-7001-3

Bestseller Hyde’s (Pay It Forward) 24th book digs deeply into the ties of love, between both family and strangers. August Shroeder is a science teacher on a trip to Yellowstone to deposit his son Philip’s ashes (he died in a car accident) when his motor home breaks down. Wes, a mechanic, offers to fix it for free if August will take his two sons, Seth and Henry, along for the summer while Wes serves a prison sentence for multiple DUIs. Seth is concerned with being polite and earning the right to go along; Henry doesn’t speak. As August and the boys travel to national parks all summer, they start to understand each other and a strong bond forms. Seth and Henry are tired of Wes’s drinking and lies; August, who stopped drinking when his son died, tries to navigate AA meetings in strange places while parenting again, all while facing the reality that the boys have to go back to their father at the end of the trip. Eight years later, August beings suffering from muscular dystrophy, and suffers even more deeply because of irregular contact with the boys. When they show up to take him on another camping trip through national parks, they have a chance to redefine their bonds, talk as adults about the challenges of living with Wes, and discuss their lives together. Hyde gives her characters great internal depth, and the book’s scope gives readers time to savor this memorable, moving journey. (June)