Home to Woefield by Susan Juby
Harper Paperbacks; March 8, 2011
Paperback, 320 Pages
Prudence Burns, a well-intentioned New Yorker full of back-to-the-land ideals, just inherited Woefield Farm—thirty acres of scrubland, dilapidated buildings, and one half-sheared sheep. But the bank is about to foreclose, so Prudence must turn things around fast! Fortunately she’ll have help from Earl, her banjo-playing foreman with a family secret; Seth, the neighbor who hasn’t left the house since a high school scandal; and Sara Spratt, an eleven-year-old who’s looking for a home for her prize-winning chickens.Home to Woefield is about learning how to take on a challenge, face your fears, and find friendship in the most unlikely of places.
Prudence is a quirky girl, one who loves organic food, has a green thumb and will try and recycle anything she uses. Along with being an unknown YA author in New York she also craves for a way to express her passion for growing her own food. So when fate steps in and hands Prudence an inherited farm from an uncle, she drops everything, moves to Canada and begins a new life on Woefield Farm.
Woefield farm consists of a run-down house, a freaky looking sheep, dirt and a mangled little cottage that the crotchety old handyman lives in. What Woefield farm doesn’t have is a barn, grass or any animals that can actually produce healthy food. Prudence though, always the sunny optimist, who sees the silver lining in every cloud sets her mind on a mission to pull the farm together and make enough money before the bank forecloses. She receives some unlikely help from a hermit crab blogger named Seth, who by chance moves in for room and board in exchange to help out with house chores, Earl the grouchy old man who swears like a dirty old sailor and lives on the farm and a little girl named Sarah who raises chickens and needs a new home for them. Little by little as the chickens bring the first real hope to the farm, Prudence and the gang begin to spruce things up…from scary toilets to sheering sheep this farm may just be the most successful story this neighborhood has seen.
This was hilarious and I did enjoy getting to know these unforgettable characters at Woefield. The small hick town, the odd relationships, everything just fit together in a big bowl of laugh out load jell-o. The writing was fabulous in the sense of character development and plotline and the use of the four distinct voices worked so well to get the serious, hopeful, grouchy and funny sides across. Nothing overly exciting happens in the story but it was fun to watch the friendships come together and feel the sense of community that the small neighborhood created bringing Woefield Farm to life. I guess the only problem I had with this book was the language and not that language offends me but I thought it was overused and Seth and Earl defiantly needed some vinegar squirted in their mouths. Hearing the F bomb, S bomb, B bomb and GD bomb on every page just takes away from the characters and Earl’s use of swear words irked me to the point where it did take away some of my likeness for the book. So if language offends you I would not suggest reading this, however if quirky characters, chickens, freaky sheep and comedy are your thing I would go for it.
“Let me paint a picture for you in words. People don’t take my skills seriously, but there’s an art to it. There really is. When I was on a roll, I used to update my blogs eight, sometimes twelve hours a day. That’s eight or twelve hours of writing. Stephen King is probably one of the only other guys who writes that much...Pg.8- Seth
Home to Woefield is recommended to adult readers and contain: Graphic language, violence, family drama, creating community, friendship,organic food and farming and lots of chickens!
3/5- Adult Contemporary
Thanks to Publisher and Tlc for review copy