AL SCHNUPP's GOODS & EFFECTS Reviewed by Online Book Club

Review by Rosemary Wright

Goods & Effects, by Al Schnupp, follows a widow named Hannah, who lost her family in an accident. All her life, she had attended Creekside Mennonite Church, but she was told by Deacon Stahl that her husband would not be given a Christian funeral because he was not confirmed as a member of their church. Hence, she interred her husband and two sons on their farm.

Afterwards, Hannah sold her farm and became a traveling saleslady. Her truck became her store and home. Intrigued by a mobile store, most people welcomed her and became her customers. Thus, she met a lot of people and made new friends. Abandoning her old life, including her religious faith, would she be able to overcome her losses and have a happy life again?

Consisting of 166 pages, Goods & Effects is a novella and quick read. It comprises brief and important events that happened in the protagonist's life within a period of time. Moreover, the descriptions of the scenery and events are so vivid that I felt like I was watching a television series. It's a light and somewhat heart-warming story. There's a place where Hannah and her friends deal with certain racist guys that are bothering a Black family. That narrative is quite amusing and satisfying.

The book contains intriguing and lifelike characters. The author did a good job of giving necessary and enough details about them, which make them relatable. I love Hannah, the protagonist. She is strong and helpful. In spite of her own issues, she ensures that those she comes across are happy. She accepts everyone who extends the hand of friendship to her. She also has a nonjudgmental personality.

Furthermore, there's nothing I dislike about the book, except that the author should have divided it into chapters to make it look more organized. Besides, though it's a novella, I would have been happier if he included additional events. I wanted more of the story because it was eloquently written and has some entertaining scenes.

Finally, I rate Goods & Effects 4 out of 4 stars. I couldn't give it a lower rating since it is interesting and flows smoothly. It includes realistic and witty conversations. In addition, it seems professionally edited; I noticed just one typo. While readers who don't like novels with a rural setting may not enjoy it, it'll be a worthwhile read for anyone seeking a book which is about how to move on after losing a close relative or friend.