Courting Mr. Emerson by Melody Carlson is a standalone modern novel. The story is not fast-paced, action-packed, or especially exciting and yet somehow it is intriguing and enjoyable. People familiar with the children’s book series about Mr. Putter and Tabby might find this story reminiscent of that series.
Mr. Emerson is a middle-aged man who is just retiring after thirty years of teaching. He mostly keeps to himself and is comfortable in bygone eras of vinyl records and no cell phones. He doesn’t really know how to be friends with people or make connections.
Along comes Willow West whose taste runs more towards flamboyant than the ultra-conservative Mr. Emerson can handle. As the story progresses, there is both humor and loneliness. The way Melody Carlson writes about these characters makes them really come to life. Although in denial, Mr. Emerson’s loneliness is palpable.
The only sad part about the story is how quickly it ends once the romance begins.
This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Revell
Violence/Gore: An upset character can be heard smashing something.
Sex/Nudity: A character mentions skinny dipping; a couple of references are made to girls who had children before they were adults and out of wedlock, non-married characters kiss.
Mature Subject Matter:
Death of family members, unmarried mothers.
Alcohol / Drug Use:
Character mentions smoking weed as a teen; adults are smoking pot; report of a teen being a drug abuser; mention of characters drinking wine and beer.