Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Philip Gulley's latest book is subtitled, "Stories of Decency, Common Sense, and Other Endangered Species." I'd say all of Gulley's books embody decency and common sense, with a touch of humor and warmth. They're the perfect recipe for a comfortable evening of reading.
This is a collection of essays, comments on "things large and small." Gulley, a Quaker minister, starts with an story explaining that the problems of society can be blamed on the lack of porches, places where family and neighbors could gather, and communicate without even talking at times. Porch Talk contains commentaries extolling the value of a slower pace of life. Men need hardware stores, places to congregate and share talk and time.
One chapter entitled "The Compact" discusses the responsibility that members of society has to each other. He uses the lack of tax support for libraries, and the effect on the community as an example. In these days of closing libraries, this was a particularly strong warning.
Gulley's overall message is that people shouldn't be so busy living the good life that they forget how to enjoy life. Philip Gulley's books all have messages for the readers, but his thoughtful, humorous tones encourage the readers to pay attention and enjoy the lesson. Porch Talk is a return visit to a slower life, and an old friend.
Philip Gulley's website is www.philipgulleybooks.com
Porch Talk by Philip Gulley. HarperCollins Publishers, ©2007. ISBN 978-0-06-073658-3 (hardcover), 170p.