A great novel may be fiction, but it is based on universal truth and feelings: Everyone has felt sadness, pain, hopelessness, love, fear, and many other human emotions, but a great writer knows how to reach into your soul and bring these emotions to life.
My favorite novel, Giants in the Earth, by O. E. Rölvaag, has been called the greatest and most important pioneer story ever written. This classic novel was required reading in one of my high school English classes, and I’ve never forgotten it. So far, I have read this novel four times, and my emotions are stirred anew each time I turn a page .
I crossed the vast prairies of the Great Plains with Norwegian immigrants as they traveled into the sun by covered wagon; I lived with them and shared their loneliness and heartache as they struggled to build a life in a new country hundreds of miles from their homeland. I lived with them and got to know them, and love them. The emotions were true; the writing honest. At some point in the future, I’ll probably read Giants in the Earth again. I’ve already read the two sequels: Peder Victorious and Their Fathers’ God.
Peace and love.