• Hardcover: 432 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow (October 13, 2015)
The long-awaited prequel to the #1 New York Times bestselling memoir Rocket Boys—the basis for the movie October Sky
Elsie Lavender and Homer Hickam Sr.—the future parents of Homer Hickam Jr.—were high school classmates in the West Virginia coalfields, graduating just as the Great Depression began. When Homer asked for her hand, Elsie instead headed to Orlando where she sparked with a dancing actor named Buddy Ebsen (yes, that Buddy Ebsen). But when Buddy headed for New York, Elsie’s dreams of a life with him were crushed and eventually she found herself back in the coalfields, married to Homer.
Unfulfilled as a miner’s wife, Elsie was reminded of her carefree days in Florida every day because of Buddy’s unusual wedding gift: an alligator named Albert who lived in the only bathroom in their little house. Eventually Homer gave Elsie an ultimatum: “Me or the alligator!” After giving it some thought, Elsie concluded there was only one thing to do—carry Albert home.
Carrying Albert Home tells the sweet, funny, and sometimes heartbreaking tale of a young couple and their special pet on a crazy 1,000-mile journey. Told with the warmth and down-home charm that made Rocket Boys a beloved bestseller, Homer Hickam’s rollicking novel is truly a testament to that strange and marvelous emotion we call love.
Good morning and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Carrying Albert Home by Homer Hickam. I’d like to send a big thank you to the author, TLC Book Tours and the publisher William Morrow for letting me read this book on exchange for an honest review.
Carrying Albert Home is an interesting book about the authors parents and their supposed journey to bring Albert, his mothers pet alligator to his home in Florida. It is considered to be mostly true as these are stories told to him by his parents as he grew up and that are based on the early period of their marriage.
This was a really good read for me. I found it to be quirky and fun. It was full of interesting characters and events that I really enjoyed. I enjoyed all the crazy things that happen to Elsie and Homer as they embark on this journey that ultimately leads them to discovering much about themselves and their marriage. Most of all I enjoyed Albert as a character and really thought he was super cute and sweet. Loving animals myself I dearly appreciated Elsie’s love for Albert and his love for her. I loved how Homers feelings toward Albert also undergo changes throughout the book. I thought the ending was beautiful.
This book ended up being a solid four star rating for me since I really enjoyed it and really liked it. For me the story seemed to lag a bit in the middle but for the most part my interest was piqued throughout as all the events unfolded and the characters feelings became more complex. I definitely appreciated this story and thought it was a cute and satisfying love story of a husband, a wife and their rooster and alligator. I even cried towards the end and really appreciated the photographs towards the end of the book and the epilogue. I am very happy I read this and hope to read and watch October Sky which was written by the author as well. I have always wanted to watch it so now I know I must! Give this one a read!
About Homer Hickam
Homer Hickam (also known as Homer H. Hickam Jr.) is the bestselling and award-winning author of many books, including the #1New York Times memoir Rocket Boys, which was adapted into the popular film October Sky. A writer since grade school, he is also a Vietnam veteran, a former coal miner, a scuba instructor, an avid amateur paleontologist, and a retired engineer. He lives in Alabama and the Virgin Islands.