Life Is Short But Wide

Life Is Short But Wide Like the small towns J California Cooper has so vividly portrayed in her previous novels Wideland Oklahoma is home to ordinary Americans with big hearts Among them are newlyweds Irene and Val who

  • Title: Life Is Short But Wide
  • Author: J. California Cooper
  • ISBN: 9781400075690
  • Page: 259
  • Format: Paperback
  • Like the small towns J California Cooper has so vividly portrayed in her previous novels, Wideland, Oklahoma, is home to ordinary Americans with big hearts Among them are newlyweds Irene and Val, who graciously allow their neighbors, Bertha and Joseph, to build a house on their land Together the couples have three daughters, all who struggle to find love and success inLike the small towns J California Cooper has so vividly portrayed in her previous novels, Wideland, Oklahoma, is home to ordinary Americans with big hearts Among them are newlyweds Irene and Val, who graciously allow their neighbors, Bertha and Joseph, to build a house on their land Together the couples have three daughters, all who struggle to find love and success in the changing world But although the years may bring hardship and heartache, they also teach the importance of living one s life boldly and squeezing out every possible moment of joy An irresistible story of faith and family, Life Is Short But Wide proves that no matter who you are or what you do, you are never too old to chase your dreams.

    • Best Read [J. California Cooper] ↠ Life Is Short But Wide || [Poetry Book] PDF ✓
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      Published :2019-07-06T04:59:08+00:00

    About " J. California Cooper "

  • J. California Cooper

    J California Cooper first found acclaim as a playwright The author of seventeen plays, she was named Black Playwright of the Year in 1978 It was through her work in the theater that she caught the attention of acclaimed poet and novelist Alice Walker Encouraged by Walker to turn her popular storytelling skills to fiction, Cooper wrote her first collection of short stories, A Piece of Mine, in 1984 Called rich in wisdom and insight and a book that s worth reading, A Piece of Mine introduced Cooper s trademark style her intimate and energetic narration, sympathetic yet sometimes troubled characters, and the profound moral messages that underlie seemingly simple stories Two story collections followed on the heels of A Piece of Mine In 1986 came Homemade Love, winner of an American Book Award, and, in 1987, Some Soul to Keep.

  • 574 Comments

  • Another great book by J. California Cooper. If you're of fan of JCC, then I would highly recommend reading and/or listening to this audio book.


  • Author J. California Cooper takes us to Wideland, Oklahoma to chronicle the lives, loves, and losses of two families in her latest offering entitled, Life Is Short But Wide. A 91 year-old narrates the story and immediately espouses Cooper's signature edicts of loving life, yourself, one another, and God. The "do right," work hard, save money, importance of education, etc. lessons are also overtly and repeatedly layered in the stories of Val and Irene, Joseph and Bertha, and their children. Their [...]


  • The narrator of this beautiful story is a ninety year old woman that is recounting her history. Slavery, love and redemption correlate the story as she takes the reader on a journey on the people that paved the way for her life. Starting with Irene who falls in love with a man named Val in the early twentieth century. Despite the love that she has for him, she makes it clear that she is not going to be anyone's slave. Teaching him how to read and write is one of the benefits of their relationshi [...]


  • 2.5 stars. I wanted to like this more than I did. I really thought I would love it. It even had a great title. I did enjoy the narration in this. It was a story that spanned multiple generations that contained both the good and the bad. I also liked the journey the characters were on. It felt meaningful.What I didn’t like, is that the plot seemed to be all over the place. I wish it had been reigned in and tightened up. There were so many people in this that the specifics were spread a little t [...]


  • I like a good character study, and was looking forward to this story of the lives of a small neighborhood of family (biological and "lifelong friend" family) in Oklahoma. The beginning of the book was adequate to keep me interested, but nothing that really stood out as outstanding. In the middle, I did come to care for the characters and was engaged in their stories and what would happen to them. I personally felt like things fell apart in the last quarter or so of the book. All of the sudden Co [...]


  • When I started reading this book, I had no idea that I would finish it in one day. Life is Short But Wide" by J. California Cooper is a complicated romance novel that leaves you wondering so much.As I maneuvered through "Life is Short But Wide", I felt the pain that Cooper was describing. The grief, the abuse, and the poison are all elements of the book that made me cringe. Cooper forced me to question human nature. How can someone be evil or selfish or uncaring? What motivates someone to be ful [...]


  • Maybe I shouldn't have purchased a reader, but just kept borrowing from the library.I feel I have to finish a book I don't even like, just because I have purchased it! Crazy, I know. I really do love "folksy" books ("Cold Sassy Tree" and "Enemy Women" are two of my all-time favorites). This book, however, was disjointed, inappropriately folksy, and boring. Added to that, there were a lot of outright comments against conservatism, and in the end a long "commercial" for the Jehovah Witness Church. [...]


  • I haven't read Cooper in many years, mainly because I found her use of exclamation points annoying. (Yes, I read the Writer's Chronicle article and I understand why she uses them. They still bug.) I read this for book group and honestlyI forgot about these people as soon as I closed the book. Maybe it needed more exclamation points? The dialogue definitely needed more apostrophes.SPOILER*****What was the point of the outside narrator? I kept expecting her to play some major role -- like, she was [...]


  • Although this book is well written, and at times interesting, I found it to be tedious (very repetitious) and I found then ending to be very preachy. It was as if the author was trying to convert readers to become Jehovah's Witnesses! It's too bad because I have long enjoyed many of her books-- they have been some of my favorites of all time! I'll stick with her earlier works!


  • Really enjoyed this book at the outset but as it went along I felt like the author spent way too much time on a lot of unnecessary narrative. It ended on a bad note for me when the author rambled for pages on a completely disjointed character epiphany. It was a nice story but needed some fine tuning and EDITING!


  • This was the first book I've ever read by J. California Cooper. I've known about her all of my life but never got around to reading any of her books until now. Life is Short But Wide is the perfect title for this book. All of its characters go through life, some of them living their dreams, others letting their own self-limiting beliefs delay their dreams, and yet others letting their environment trick them into believing that pursuing dreams is a luxury they can't afford. The book is narrated b [...]


  • All the characters in this book have hard lives. It follows several generations in a family. They work hard to try to survive and are often did wrong. They try to always do what's right and keep God in mind. It covers several family relationships and romances. You see several characters from childhood to death. Some die from old age. Others die too soon. Basically, I think the point is just how difficult yet fulfilling life can be and also maintain your faith.


  • J. California Cooper is a phenomenal writer. She inspires and motivates inside her short stories and novels, through her characters. This book was no exception. Unfortunately, I still enjoy her short stories better than her novels. This book discussed how these families lived, how lives came together through the journey of life, and how love never grows old or dies. This book was very depressing and stressful in some parts. Having to read about how a young girl was sold away from her family beca [...]


  • shelfnotesJanuary 10, 2014Dear Reader,This was an another audiobook find that I stumbled across on my local library's Overdrive site. I don't know that I would have come across it otherwise, but I am glad I did - and that I gave it a fair shake, because it almost immediately turned me off with religious talk: I thought it might not be my kind of book. But, ultimately, the God talk was pretty limited, and did all work with the theme and feel of the book, so I am glad I stuck with it. Cooper is a [...]


  • I am a big fan of J. California Cooper and her short story anthologies. However, this is the first actual novel that I have read of Cooper's.This book is a historical journey that reaches across a few generations. It tells of two sisters that grow up and take very different paths. The story mostly follows Rose, the sister that stays home. Ultimately, it ends up being a story of how Rose finds her true love. This was an interesting enough story with a lot of people and situations to follow throug [...]


  • This was an interesting story. I liked the style in which the story was told. I felt that there was a lot of sadness, loss and grief in this story, but the happy ending made the story worthwhile. I liked the fact that the story had a nice theme of love, family & friendship. It helped to balance out the sadness and misfortune.I liked that the setting of this story was in Oklahoma. I lived there for almost ten years. I finally moved to another state in 2009. Like some of the characters in the [...]


  • Although I love JCC, this was not amongst my favourite reads. The main characters were good, honest and likeable but were beset by way too many misfortunes which resulted in their demise and replacement of the main characters twice. The last two main characters Herman and Mynne were okay - well Herman had the potential to be absolutely loveable and I think opportunities to exploit this promise were missed. Mynne on the other hand, although not a weak character, she did not make any resounding st [...]


  • I normally love anything by J. California Cooper, but I just couldn't connect with this book. Maybe I'm the wrong audience (I never could get into romance, and a love story underpins the book.)The writing and characters are, as usual with JCC, knockouts. The voices were so bright, and the characters diverse and endearing. But plot-wise, nothing much happened. These people fell in love and get married and had kids. Then these people fell in love and got married and built a house and had kids. Was [...]


  • I have to admit, I was drawn to this book simply by the title, so simple yet so true. I'd never read this author before and was pleasantly surprised by her storytelling ability. I found myself drawn into each character in the small town of Wideland,Oklahoma. Amidst lifes tragedies there is always so much beauty, if only one is able to recognize it. It was a sad yet hopeful story and I quite like the story of folks finding a passionate love pass what most would deem their prime. "Life is Short, B [...]


  • Growing up my mom had just about all of J. California Cooper's books and I happily read them. I was excited when I found out there was a new one out and it more than lived up to my expectations. I could barely put it down for want of finishing it. Nobody spins life lessons and love stories into 1 quite like this author.


  • written from the perspective of the poor black community beginning in the 1930's on, this is the story of one family "just livin'". wonderful vocabulary and cadence bring you into the heart of their experiences; their heartbreaks and victories, their loves and losses. I say read it to open your mind and heart to a world most of us will never know.


  • Loved the narration, I can see how the storytelling thing wouldn't work for everyone but I really enjoyed that additional "voice" in the novel and the occasional perfectly phrased bits of wisdom it drops into the narrative. A sweet, quiet story but one with a lot of threads, some of which are left unresolved or feel too tangential.



  • I liked parts of it a lot and other parts not so much. After about 2/3, the book started to drag. Some gritty portrayals of life made me want to slap some people up side the head.


  • This book was different from what I expected, or maybe it's just that it's been so long since I put it on my list that I forgot what it was about! It kept me interested in the characters though :)


  • This book made laugh, made me want to cry, & made me furious. I will definitely read this author again.


  • 2.5 starsIt was a very straightforward and easy read (though it got intense at times) about people living their lives. It was a little boring towards the end, but not a bad read if you're looking for an examination of people's lives.


  • Sometimes you read a work of fiction that makes you think and want to be better, this is one such book if you read with a combination of an open mind and a sense of historical times. First character that I felt let down by in a sense was Val Strong. His double stron(Val in Latin) and yet his wife's death makes him lose his will to live. I am also disappointed in this because he was raised as an Indian Warrior/Brave. I am rather certain they do not teach give up and die but this is my assessment. [...]


  • I have wanted to read a book by J. California Cooper for the longest. This particular book has been sitting in my wish list, then TBR pile since forever and a day. A couple of my bookhearts (Vern and Cassandra) have encouraged my reading this author. What better time to try a new African American author than during Black History Month? So I finally picked up and started reading Life is Short but Wide. The story is told from different perspectives. Overall, it is about love. That "hard-to-find, h [...]


  • A Story About Life and LoveNot many times will you find stories woven together in the way that this one is. Two paths that merge, and each has a distinct beginning. Readers are given a clear understanding of how each character came to be; why Myine lives, loves, and believes as she does and how she became so content all alone in the family home, how Juliet and Cloud reach what becomes a pinnacle in their relationship with one another, and where their old friend Herman fits. The history is well d [...]


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