7/15/11 ** Absolutely phenomenal book. I was out with no book, so stole one from my husband's bag, though I'd never heard of it. Keturah lives in the poorest village in the kingdom and is known for her storytelling skills. When she wanders into the forest and gets lost, she meets Lord Death and, using her storytelling magic, convinces him to spare her life for one day. If she can find her one true love, he'll spare her life entirely.
Keturah is selfless; she seems to create her own happiness by helping her friends find and achieve their hearts' desires. Half way through the book, I realized that it's really about fear - fear of death, which is really about fear of loss, fear of losing what we love. This is a tale about appreciating the small things we have in life. The lyrical writing helped me see true love in a new way - not the passionate feelings between lovers, but a celebration of the small things in life. Keturah says, "When Death touches you, your smallest talents become gold; the most ordinary loves break your heart with their beauty" (p. 209).
A fairy tale - a story by which we discover deeper meanings about our own lives.
Another quote: "There is no hell. Each man, when he dies, sees the landscape of his own soul" (p. 208).