Emory's Gift: A Novel

ByW. Bruce Cameron

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Readers` Reviews

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
catherine newell
Delightful story of a junior high school student navigating the pitfalls of adolescence. Interwoven with a supernatural tale of a grizzly bear (a reincarnated Civil War soldier with a message). A page-turner. You will smile and laugh often.
★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
bruce wong
A Dog's Purpose is one of my favorite books, ever. I was taken off guard by the way this one, Emory's Gift, was written and plotted. Immediately, I had a hard time with the whole bear-as-friend concept because bears are anything but cuddly, outside of the little stuffed ones we had as children. In reality they are massive, dangerous, completely wild animals with mouths full of fangs, ugly thick claws and a tendency to slobber and drool. Secondly, while the encounter could have been mystical and was surely intended to be - it didn't feel that way to me at all. I get that the author wrapped a coming-of-age and dealing-with-trauma story (a boy losing his mother and then his father to grief) around this plot of the bear appearing in the young boy's life -- but there was no friendship, no interplay between them other than the kid feeding him and then irresponsibly locking him away, literally endangering the bear's welfare repeatedly. Eventually I was intrigued by the message the bear was apparently meant to give but the lack of genuine interaction between the two while the boy went about his life and the bear just ate, slept and pooped -- made sure that, pretty soon, I wasn't so interested. Which is a good thing because by the end of the book when the message is revealed, I was dumbfounded at how irrelevant it was to the story. How unimaginative.
In the meantime, reading the book just plain became a chore because the author did something which I don't remember him doing in the wonderful Dog's Purpose -- he kept ending chapters with hooks and cliffhangers and he did the same throughout the chapter -- forecasting what was to come with statements (paraphrasing) like, "but I didn't realize just how bad it would get!" or "but I had no idea what awful thing was going to happen next!' I found this gratingly distracting. I can't remember the last time I was this disappointed in a book written by someone who has written another book I liked/loved to the degree I enjoyed A Dog's Purpose. I had to read Emory's Gift in case it was as good... but, sadly, it was a tension producing book instead -- and not in a good way.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I had to read this book because of how much I loved Bruce's previous Novel, A Dog's Purpose. This book lived up to my expectations, and I may dive right back in to read it a second time (which I never do.) It makes you think, and make your own opinion on the events told within the story. It will test your own faith, not necessarily in a religious sense, but your faith in humanity, and in a little boy named Charlie that lives inside each and every one of us...
The Dog Master: A Novel of the First Dog :: It's Just A Dog :: A Love Again Novel (Love Again Series Book 1) - The Ticket :: The Story of Arthur Truluv: A Novel :: A Dog's Way Home: A Novel
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
If you are a skeptic, you might not like Emory's Gift. But, if you can handle a little bit of fictional fantasy, you'll be pleased with the writing. This heartfelt book would be great for young men to read. They're the ones who can truly understand the grief a freshman goes through every day between cafeteria food, gym class and talking to girls. Loved it. Thanks, Bruce!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
marawi kh
This book is so heart-warming, so surprising and beautiful! I don't want to give anything away, because after reading it twice, there are still parts of it that give me goosebumps when I just think of them. I want you to have the same experience. I will tell you that there is a lot of suspense and wonder in this book. I can't wait to see it as a movie. There is a message here, too, and it will make you think about that and wish that things like this would really happen to each of us in real life. What a great story!
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
dina meyer
Bruce Cameron just has the knack for writing a fun-loving, yet informative book wrapping it into a novel.
This book is appropriate for young readers who would identify with many of the characters.
Easy reading, fun, and hard to put down!
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
agustin silva diaz
This was an "ok" book. Doesn't compare at all to A Dog's Purpose. I thought Emory was going to be a big part
of Charlie's life for a long time but he was only around for a very short while. Plus I think all the extra characters (tv crew and people camping out on the Hall's lawn) took away from it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Love this book! Haven't finished it yet and I'm hoping it doesn't have a sad ending. Very well written and easy read, makes the
characters very real and for the most part likable especially Emory.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
edward grigoryan
Cameron's dog stories are heart warming and poignant, and his bear story fills the void his readers have while waiting for the next installment. Young Charlie has recently lost his mother when a grizzly bear lumbers into his yard and changes his life forever. This is a sweet, feel good story.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
I am normally a big fan of W Bruce Cameron books, but this one was a little cheesy with the fact that Emory was a reincarnated soldier? He could have told a stirring story of a boy and his bear without bringing in a random time period / reincarnation bit.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jeff newberry
This book is touching and funny, Mr. Cameron has produced a masterpiece. It is hilarious and I loved everything about it. It is perfect for animal lovers. IT IS AWESOME!! I WILL KEEP IT FOREVER! READ IT!!!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Started reading this book after reading the first two books by this author. As I got into the begining of the book I realized that the plot was totally implausable and after continuing a little more soon realized that this story contained the same magic and warm feeling generated by the first two. Now added to my list of favorites.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ali edwards
Once I started, I couldn't stop reading. Another fabulous book by W. Bruce Cameron. If this man keeps writing, I'll never get any sleep!! Emory's Gift and A Dog's Purpose are two of the best books ever written.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
almira rahma
Bruce Cameron is the kind of writer that makes other writers stop and say, "Damn, that's good!" (Sometimes I used a few other explicatives!) I always knew him to be a good writer, but he turned that up a notch with A Dog's Purpose. He has done that again with Emory's Gift. It is a supurb merger of an excellent story with a fine detail to the craft of choosing just the right words to make every sentence resonate. It was that combination that struck me most about this book. If my mother had ever heard me saying "&^*>, that's good" as often as I did while reading Emory's Gift, I would have been tasting soap for a month.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Emory's Gift, written by W. Bruce Cameron is the story of a young boy whose recent loss of his mother and his emotional journey with a Grizzly Bear named Emory.
This is a book for all ages. A beautifully written story of reincarnation that opens up the possibility that man can return to earth after death in the shape of a gentle bear named Emory.
An excellent read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
When I first began reading this book I thought I wouldn't like it, but as I kept reading I did. It is a YA book but goes deeper as the book goes on. It asks the question, when does life begin and when does life end?

The story begins when Charlie Hall, a bear expert close to forty, thinks back to when he was thirteen. He and his parents moved from Kansas City to Idaho's Selkirk Mountains. His mother died of cancer. Charlie feels guilty about her death. He is having trouble in school, he is short, boys his age seem so much stronger, taller, more athletic. He is a troubled child, his life is not going well at this time. His father and Charlie are close. Father is somewhat strict, Charlie must be obedient and do what is right.

Then he meets Emory, a grizzly bear who saves his life. Grizzly bears are killers, violent,furious, angry. But being befriended by a grizzly bear. But is this a special bear? Neighbors keep inviting father and son to supper. There is always a lady present, Yvonne, at the meal. Charlie is tired of Yvonne and neighbors trying to make a match. Charlie misses his mom, George Hall his wife. Father and son are grieving for their loved one and don't appreciate their kindness. Laura Hall can't ever be forgotten.

After Emory becomes his friend the boy begins to have confidence in himself. Neighbors have given this family so many covered dishes after the death of Mrs Hall. Emory is well fed which he likes and demands. Charlie finds a girl in junior high who he likes and likes him, a story of young love, school dances.

But there is Emory. Neighbors want to kill him, He must run away from civilization back to where he belongs.Charlie's best friend, who made him feel worthwhile. There are many characters rushing to this little town to see the tame bear. Television crews come to film Emory and interview Charlie. Then the excitement dies down and the town returns to normal.

Looking back in time, is this the story of a lonely boy or is it just a dream. Charlie Hall doesn't think so.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jessica k
I simply loved this book, and I am hard to please. I was very taken with the authenticity of Cameron's portrayal of Charlie Hall, the lonely boy entering 8th grade newly bereft of his mother, and desperately trying to get the attention of his emotionally adrift father. Charlie's emotions, efforts and dreams are all well-drawn and real.

Even though the idea of Charlie meeting what is apparently a very tame grizzly bear (is he more than that? the reader will have to make that conclusion for himself or herself) and developing a friendship with him may strain credibility, I was happy to be drawn in. There is so much we cannot understand about life, about faith, and even about animals.

The story kept a lively pace, and I kept turning the pages to find out what next drama would unfold in Charlie's life, either regarding the bear, his crush on lovely 7th-grade Beth, his complicated relationship with other boys in school, and with his father. Emory's gift will be one that helps bring father and son together, as well as to raise the specter of the healing power of faith.

Cameron is not only skillful in writing about serious things, but he is often very, very funny. Emory's Gift is another gift from W. Bruce Cameron.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I finished this book an hour ago and loved it. It is the fourth W. Bruce Cameron book I have read in a month, since first reading A Dog's Purpose. I thoroughly enjoy his storytelling, and this book is no exception. The story of Charlie Hall and his amazing bear Emory kept me reading avidly from the moment I picked it up. The underlying story of Charlie's relationship with his father, was complicated and well-told. Also, the back story of his mother's recent passing and the way he and his father cope, and don't cope with it, is poignant and fully inspires the story. If you love Cameron - or if you've never even heard of him - but you like a good, heartfelt story, then this book is for you.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
angela gaitas
I would actually give this a 4.5 if I could. I liked it better than a 4 but not quite enough for a 5. I enjoyed the book and found it engaging most of the time. It wasn't as good a A Dog's Purpose which I simply loved, but few books are. Considering that I usually prefer completely realistic fiction, the author did well to bring me along using his device of reincarnation to develop the sad and difficult journey of a young teenage boy and his father as they struggled to adapt to the loss of their mother/wife and build a stronger relationship.

The author kept my interest with an intelligent and accurate discussion of grizzly bears and other wildlife of the Idaho wilderness as he wove in the more fanciful elements of his novel. He also offered logical, literal explanations for the mysterious events in the story as well and the spiritual or paranormal. The reader could pick whichever suited, and it helped me. I didn't have to believe in reincarnation in order to enjoy the plot and appreciate the message of this book.

I'm glad I read this novel so I will probably look for others by this author in the future.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Told in first person, Charlie tells of the time he started eighth grade in junior high school, after having lost his mother. His father had become distant, and Charlie, small for his age, seems to fit nowhere. Even his friend, who lives next to him in the country, has inexplicably turned against him. Then Charlie meets a grizzly bear. Grizzlies were supposedly extinct in Idaho and are known to be deadly. Nevertheless the bear and Charlie become friends. His ups and downs continue with schoolmates and with his father and neighbors. And through it all, the bear has a strange influence that changes Charlie forever.

Here is a delightful coming of age story that will win fans among those who love animals.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
david leadbeater
While oftentimes a book's jacket description exaggerates to the point that it makes the story seem like it's more than it really is, the description of Emory's Gift "hits the nail right on the head." It is a book that is very touching, emotional, heartwarming and, at times, bittersweet. But at all times, it is a very well-written and memorable story that will likely stay with readers (or at least this reader) for a long time to come.

The plot (which takes about 80-90 to really get involved in, which resulted in my deducting 1/2 star from my rating) is this: After thirteen-year old Charlie Hall's mother dies and his father retreats into the silence of grief, Charlie finds himself drifting, lost and alone, through the brutal halls of junior high school. But Charlie is not entirely friendless. In the woods behind his house in a small town in Idaho, he is saved from a mountain lion by a grizzly bear, a species thought to be extinct in his area. This very unusal bear will change Charlie's life forever.

Emory's Gift is not only a charming coming-of-age story, it is also a page-turning, insightful look at how faith, trust and unconditional love can heal a broken family and bridge the gaps that divide us.

I should point out that Emory's Gift, by W. Bruce Cameron, is not the type of book I usually read, being largely a fan of thrillers, mysteries and suspense books. However, Cameron has turned me into a fan and I plan to read his previous bestselling book, A Dog's Purpose, very soon.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
danita winter
Charlie Hall's mother dies. His dad becomes a hermit - sort of - as he journeys through his own grief, and 13-year-old Charlie is lost - in the spiritual sense. He wanders the halls of junior high, facing everyday things - like bullies and girls.

In W. Bruce Cameron's best-selling second novel, "Emory's Gift," Charlie finds a gift, and it comes in the shape of an odd grizzly bear.

Deep inside the written words from Cameron's keyboards, one can see hints of hope, promise of hope and happiness. Emory's Gift could be called, and has been called, a growing up story- a coming of age story, if you will. Not a coming-of-age as we know it, though. It is a story of change, faith, trust and love - all the factors that make the equation for a positive life.

And Cameron uses a bear.

(Shaking head). Whatever works, and this doe
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
In EMORY'S GIFT, author Bruce Cameron first establishes his narrator Charlie Hall's expertise with bears, then immediately puts Charlie in a potential bear attack situation. Hall's years of studying bears enable him to both interpret the bear's behavior and respond to it. But his reaction is confounded by his memories of a childhood incident around which the story revolves in flashback.

When Charlie is thirteen years old, two things happen that deeply affect him: First, his father starts dating. Even though Charlie's mom died two years earlier, Charlie thinks it was too soon for his father to show interest in other women.

The second thing that happens is that Charlie makes friends with an adult male grizzly bear. When the bear begins writing Charlie notes in English, Charlie's father thinks it's Charlie's mechanism to deal with his mother's death and his father's interest in other women. But the bear, Emory, has a message for Charlie - and of course, for the reader - about God's love, which is unwavering, even in times of sadness, turmoil, and confusion.

Although I think Cameron's message could have been delivered in a more subtle manner, one that would have been more personal for Charlie (e.g., "your mother's in heaven and she loves you"), the story is nonetheless satisfying from start to finish. As an author friend once told me, the author's mission is accomplished if the story makes the reader both laugh and cry. For this reader, Cameron and EMORY'S GIFT did just that.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
(Don't worry, I won't give away anything significant) For the first 125 pages, this is simply a wonderful coming-of-age book about 13 year-old Charlie Hall: the affect losing his mom had on him, the pressures of middle school, and his first crush - oh yeah, and as should be obvious from the book jacket, his odd chance encounter with a bear. Then it takes the most surreal twist I've ever encountered in a book of this type, but I'll leave that for you to explore, because I highly recommend you buy this book. Let's just say that when I hit a certain page, my jaw dropped open, I turned to my wife and said "I think this book is about to get stupid." But it doesn't. It tells a surreal story in a realistic and beautiful way.

I'm not clear as to how this book is being targeted - it should be considered Young Adult fiction, but it can definitely be enjoyed by almost anyone of any age. The characters are so believable (didn't we all know kids like Charlie, Dan, Kay and Beth?) and the intensity with which Charlie deals with his life and loves is very well done. You really feel like you know him... and will miss him. This was the first book in a while where I could not wait to get back to it every night.

If I have any complains, they are nit-picks. A few times I wanted to trim some scenes and move forward a little faster, but that's almost a compliment as I could not wait to find out what would happen next and it was making me a bit impatient. But a few dozen pages probably could have been trimmed to quicken the pace. The ending, while very good, was a little bit predictable and left me wishing for something a little more surprising, just as the original twist did.

If you like stories like Charlotte's Web, or even the 70's classic "Oh, God!" I'm sure you will enjoy this book. Buy it for your kids. Buy it for yourself.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
jack thelen
Being a 13-year-old boy, in middleofnowhereville, is tough enough. Being Charlie, who recently lost his mother and is finding himself being pushed away by his father, it's especially hard. When Charlie is saved from a mountain lion by a grizzly, Charlie begins to believe the bear is special. But is the bear all Charlie says he is, or is Charlie seeking attention in a way that is sure to backfire?

I seem to have a talent for reading books by authors that have other books out that I've never read. Which makes it hard to say "this is as good as" or "don't bother, get that other one". What I can say, based on this book alone, is that Emory's Gift is a good story that has the power to make you stop and think. To ask questions about our own preconceived notions or about others' beliefs. And anytime a book can do that while keeping the reader entertained at the same time - then I think that speaks for itself.

Emory's Gift is not earth-shattering, but it's a well-told story that speaks to themes about love, family and personal beliefs. There is some mention of God (though not necessarily of any specific deity), so if you're God-phobic, this is probably not the book for you. However, those mentions are light, and are completely in keeping with the overall arc - I never got the impression that I was being preached at or to. It's more along the lines of the mysterious, and how mankind has the unique capability to explain away almost anything that borders on miraculous.

Overall, it's a good story with characters that can occasionally be one-dimensional but try hard. A good read for curling up on the couch in the evening, and creating food for thought after the book is done.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
kerri mancini
First of all, I would like to say that of all the authors I've read in more than 4 decades, I have never encountered one that is so much in touch with his inner child than Bruce Cameron. I don't mean that his writing is childlike but that when he writes the emotions of a child in his stories, it is just so precise, as if he, when growing up, took note of every emotion and reaction he had because what he writes feels so real. I find it really amazing. In Emory's Gift, this talent is so apparent in his portrayal of Charlie Hall, the boy who "found" the bear who can write. When I read it, I felt like I was 13 years old again, all the fears and anxieties, optimism and hope, all flooding back.

This is the second book I've read that was authored by Bruce Cameron and I wasn't disappointed. He writes so beautifully of a subject that is dear to me (animals) and he is also quite intrepid in including God in his stories especially in today's politically correct world when some people won't even use the word God but instead use Force, Universe, or Spirit.

Thank you for writing a truly inspirational book and I look forward to more stories. I believe these are the kind of books that should be in high schools instead of the depressing titles that children are made to read nowadays.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I've never read A Dog's Purpose by the same author (but that will change now!). I chose this book from the the store Vine program based on it's reviews and because it was an animal story (I'm a sucker). Now with animal stories, you can win or lose. Reading a sad animal story doesn't do it for me, I like happy endings and good things to happen. After getting this book in the mail, I kind of lamented that I chose it as I thought it might be a sappy story about a strange boy and a talking bear. Still, I started reading it and was so happy to see that by the time I had finished the first chapter, that I had been horribly wrong in my preconceptions about the book.

I hope I don't burst any bubbles by revealing that the bear does NOT talk in the book, nor is there any mental telepathy or anything like that. Thank goodness. That would have been a bit of a stretch. Even though this is a work of fiction, I'd like to imagine that the events in it could happen. The way it was written, it is quite believable, and makes the story that much more enjoyable. It feels like the author nailed the feelings of 13 year old Charlie Hall as he dealt with his mother's death, father's withdrawal, and his own social failures. You will come to love Charlie, and root for him as things get better for him over time. Even though those are all heavy subjects, the book is not gloom and doom as Charlie has a very resilient and upbeat side of him.

Overall, just a super book. One reviewer thought it was wordy, which I don't get, but we all like different styles. The story is totally written from Charlies viewpoint, so you are in his mind the whole time, so maybe when he ruminates over events, it may seem wordy to some, but I didn't feel that way at all. Even with reading the author's acknowledgements, Cameron gives the impression of being a genuinely nice person, and the fact he writes about animals with compassion, that makes me a fan now.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
michael k
What we can learn from a bear--you will be surprised! In this bittersweet story, a sad boy mourns the death of his mother and the silence in which he and his grieving father dwell. The boy wanders the rural wilderness where he lives. He is saved from a mountain lion by, of all things, a grizzly bear. This book is about the relationship of boy and bear, a tale of healing, understanding, and a teenage boy trying to communicate with adults, and not always succeeding. In the end, the bear transforms the boy's life. I recommend this book. It has a wonderful ending, which I will not spoil.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mary kravenas
Emory's Gift is a wonderfully whimsical coming of age story about a young boy named Charlie Hall who has recently lost his mother to cancer, has no idea how to communicate with his father and who is just starting junior high with no friends. In his adventures in the woods of rural Idaho behind his home he runs into a very special bear. The bear and him actually communicate by writing.

In this story Emory's Gift to Charlie is helping him forgive himself and others, improve his relationship with his father, make new friends and find his first love. This story is really charming and captivating at the same time. It kept me totally engrossed until the very last page.

I had never read any of the author W. Bruce Cameron's other work before I read this. I love the way he tells such an inspirational coming of age story that many author's have wrote before, yet, he tells it in such an original way. It's almost like a fairy tale, yet it's realistic at the same time. I found myself thinking, "yes, this could actually happen" when Emory writes his message to Charlie. It really touched the child still in me and I think many will find this book very inspirational. It's such a new take on a coming of age story.

Bottom line: I absolutely loved this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
e jacklin de
I've never been a 13 year old boy, but I did raise one, and I can attest to the true character of Charlie Hall--his feelings, his speech, his overall being. To say nothing of the trials and tribulations of being in junior high school--that's what it was called when I was there. None of this namby-pamby middle school stuff. Add to that the fact that Charlie Hall has lost his mother less than a year ago and his father has sort of disappeared into his own grief. Entering that picture is Emory--a grizzly bear.

Bruce Cameron has created a really loveable character in Charlie Hall. I was smitten with him in the first chapter. There were lines that had me laughing out loud and lines that had my heart aching for Charlie.

I'm an animal lover from way back and Emory's Gift was a joy to read. Can I believe all the things that happened with Charlie and Emory? When the writing is this good and the story this enjoyable, you bet I can!!
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
First thing to point out if you've previously read W. Bruce Cameron's debut masterpiece, A Dog's Purpose, is that this one isn't narrated by a bear, or written through the eyes of any animal other than human. It's through the eyes of a now adult bear researcher, who retells his thirteenth year of life in northern rural Idaho, many who have heard his tale in the past believe he made it up, or manipulated his encounter with a grizzly bear named Emory. Charlie's about to enter the second year of junior high, his mother passed away not long ago, but he's welcoming the return to school as since his wife's death his father has become a closed in emotional shell, plus Charlie's expecting school life to get better now that there's younger kids to be tormented. However as he gets on the school bus he realises the bodies of every one else his age have developed more than him. His former best friend not only socially bars him, but is trying to increase his own social status by being openly hostile and a bully towards him. Emory's Gift starts off great, while fishing and angry at the world, Charlie's life is saved by the sudden appearance of a bear. Charlie doesn't see the wild bear as the threat to his life that he should. After it eats his fish, he decides it will become his best friend if he can feed it everyday. However he knows he's got to keep the bear's presence a secret from his father as his father won't let him near it, and worse someone else might drive away or kill his new and only friend. However with the social pressures of school, his father's social and work life, along with bullies not prepared to leave him alone, even at home, that's going to prove a difficult task. Plus it seems the bear, has motives of its own.

For the most part I think this book is really well written, it's very enjoyable and I do recommend everyone reads it. However there's some key aspects, especially one that I didn't like at all. It's hard to say what I didn't like about it without giving away major aspects of the plot, so I'll try and remain vague but if you haven't read it you may want to leave reading this review at this point. I thought the book would have worked better for helping Charlie with life, if Emory had simply remained a normal bear, rather than becoming a bit cartoony and ultimately writing messages. A normal bear could have for some reason not eaten him, followed him to his house, even slept in the shed and eventually maybe his dad could have discovered the dangerous thing happening and woken up from his slumber and realised yeah I lost my wife who I loved, but if I don't start paying attention to my son and showing more interest in his life, he's going to get eaten by a bear or something else bad will happen to him. Bullies could have had a run in with the bear or something too. It really didn't need the whole beyond a bear aspect or the message. And what I really hated was the message. We're building up to the message, it's the pivotal point of the story, the whole point of the tale, since we knew there was a message we've read a lot of side story waiting to read it, and then we find out what it is. You just wanted to shake your head and throw the book away in disgust. Surely, you're thinking to yourself, W, Bruce Cameron could have come up with something better than that! The message had no purpose to the plot, it wasn't going to change the community's behaviour or anything like this, nor did there seem any reason for the bear to give it. It's almost like the author had a really successful first novel, a big following on Facebook, then thought it's his duty if at some time in his life he is ever given the opportunity of a book that will be read by thousands, where they are all waiting for what he had to say, to do that. I was really disappointed with the message, then it annoyed me, disgusted me, then it angered me. I don't think anyone no matter what there beliefs, politics, of who have one sided viewpoints on controversial topics, has a right to do that to the general public who have bought a general fiction book without a warning that, that's the message of the book on the front cover.

Besides the message the ending was also fairly predictable. It did look at two stages like it wasn't going to give the safest and fairytale like ending for the two main parts of the plot that some readers are hoping for, then it's almost like Cameron changes his mind. Thinking he might have a Cathy Bates out of Stephen King's Misery type fan, and goes with the less satisfying, unrealistic happier version just to be safe.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
sophie blackwell
I expected Emory's Gift to be a coming-of-age story, where a bear plays a key role in a young man's life. But I did not expect the spiritual/supernatural aspect, where the bear does decidedly un-bearlike things and we see he's not just a bear. I was very disappointed when the story changed in that direction; I was expecting a kind of modern Gentle Ben and felt cheated. Emory's Gift is obviously loved by many readers. I think I might have liked it, too, if I'd had a heads-up about the nature of the bear. Instead I was mourning the loss of the bearlike bear.

But the writing is outstanding! I loved the characters, and W. Bruce Cameron's storytelling was completely engaging. It was on the strength of this writing that I read A Dog's Purpose by the same author, and it was one of my favorite books of the year.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
stephanie hayes
Emory's Gift is a story about Charlie, a junior high school boy, whose mother has died and whose father is so lost in his own grief that he can't reach out to comfort Charlie. They barely talk to each other, and can't seem to bridge the pain. Late in summer, before school starts, Charlie is exploring the creek behind his house in Idaho, when he has a miraculous encounter with a huge Grizzly Bear named Emory. This life changing meeting of boy and bear affects more than just Charlie; it touches everyone around him.

W. Bruce Cameron brought back all that junior high school angst in hysterical clarity, I laughed until the tears fell remembering the things we go through at thirteen. A mystical adventure, sweet, funny and oh so emotionally touching. I loved Emory--bear hugs all around for this entertaining book. This would be a great book for teens and their families to read together. I reviewed this book through the the store Vine Program.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
wendy davis
I really enjoyed Emory's Gift and had a hard time putting it down. I wanted to be there and touch Emory myself, maybe even hug him like Charlie could. Really, you can't go wrong with any of W. Bruce Cameron's books.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
When I received this book in the mail, my 12 year old daughter saw the cover and HAD to read it first! ha ha! She loved it. I mean, it was all she could talk about for days. When she finished, she pestered me so much to "read it now!" that I had to put another book I was reading away to start this one.

I can see why she liked it! A very nice story from the perspective of an adolescent boy who isn't Mr. Popular. He isn't an outcast or anything, but not leader of the pack...and doesn't really have too many (any) friends. Add to that a death in the family, and you have a pretty sad protagonist who needs a friend--as well as a desire to not be so invisible. I am sure most kids (and adults) can relate to the feeling of wanting to do or be something great and stand out for once!

I did enjoy the book. I am not sure about the big climax scenes, but the author didn't go too too far...just enough, I guess. :) I could never take away any stars though from a book my daughter is begging to read again. It is one of her best-of-the-year books!!!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
amy finnegan
Charlie's mother passed away, and his father enters a silence of grief as Charlie steps into his own isolated world at the age of thirteen, while dealing with the trials-and-tribulations of junior high school. One adventure every teen attempts to survive, but never forgets the experience. As Charlie suffers from the loss of a loved one, while coping with anguish and pain, he discovers that he's not all alone in the world. As Charlie contemplates on his place in the world, his life is saved from a mountain lion by a grizzly bear. Charlie's life is changed forever as he learns about trust, faith, and unconditional love. W. Bruce Cameron penned a compelling Masterpiece that will tug at your heart page-after-page. This novel is highly recommended for all readers who love animals, and stories that are charming, and heartwarming. This book offers joy, hope, and is deeply moving. The author takes the reader on an emotional roller-coaster ride that will indeed leave a remarkable impression as you crave for more.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
I haven't had a chance to read W. Bruce Cameron's previous book, A Dog's Purpose. I bought it, but as a person who buys books faster than I can read them, I am way behind. I was looking forward to reading Emory's Gift. Just the image on the cover is enough to intrigue any reader, but especially one who loves animals and animal stories.

I was also drawn to the story. A thirteen year old boy who has a pretty lonely existence since he lost his mom being befriended by a grizzly bear is a far fetched premise to say the least, but sometimes that makes for the best kinds of stories. That was certainly the case here. I was somewhat surprised to see that Charlie's mother died from the same type of leukemia that my mom died from and Charlie's mom was named Laura, as was my mom. It amazed me how art imitates life and it drew me further into the story and made it feel much more personal to me. I love a story that speaks to me that way. I knew Emory's Gift was going to be a story to savor and remember.

I really did enjoy this story very much. It is about so much more than the relationship between Charlie and Emory. Charlie is a boy with several relationships in his life that are broken, as broken as he is. I was very touched by this story, but I did find that there some places that slowed down, which caused my mind to wander a bit. I didn't find this to be a big problem, but it was enough for me to give this book 4.5 stars instead of five. I think overall, upon reflecting on Emory's Gift, that this book is a winner. I really enjoyed this reading experience and now I am ready to go back and read A Dog's Purpose.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I am a great fan of Bruce Cameron; he has made me laugh for years, and after reading A Dog's Purpose (another fantastic book that I buy as gifts for friends and family), I knew that Emory's Gift would be another block buster. I was right! This book reminded me what it was like to be a junior high student, feeling lost and alone in a big, uncharted territory. Though I didn't lose my mother at a tender age as the narrator of the book had, I could feel every bit of his angst and insecurity. Mr. Cameron writes so that you can hear the characters' voices, the tone, the hurt, the happiness. What a wonderful gift Mr. Cameron has, to bring us to the end of every emotional nerve; he writes books that make one truly feel and contemplate the world as it is -- good and bad. I started this book Friday morning and finished it Friday evening. I can't wait to start reading it again!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
victoria carter
W. Bruce Cameron's new novel, Emory's Gift, is as wonderful as his previous work, A Dog's Purpose. Cameron's gift is in the way he finds the magic in what we might overlook, or worse yet, not have the faith enough to believe what we can't see, or touch with our own hands.

If John Grisham had written the Alchemist, adding a liberal dose of humor you'd have Emory's Gift, by W. Bruce Cameron.

Emory's Gift is a startlingly honest view of a 13 year-old boy's world, yet it's the kind of story that all ages can enjoy. Cameron gives us Diary of A Whimpy Kid for adults, where we can safely relive the horrors of adolescence, and the brutality of junior high school, from the safety of our secure adult world.

Told from the view point of Charlie Hall, a 13 year-old boy who's just lost his mother, Emory's Gift tells the story of Charlie's unlikely friendship with a 400lb grizzly bear. Emory, the bear, changes Charlie's life by giving him something outside his overwhelming grief to focus on, and in the end, helps Charlie to heal.

I'm amazed at how many lines this book crosses in its appeal to readers. I want to give this book to any adolescent or pre-adolescent, just to show them that they're not along in their anguish. And I'm sure that any of my adult friends would enjoy this enchanting novel of a boy's struggle to find understanding in this mother's death, and his father's retreat from the world.

Great art uplifts the soul making it sing with the possibility that there really is magic in the world. W. Bruce Cameron gives us a story with characters that will live on in our lives, enriching our souls, and giving us life lessons in a gentle, humorous way that makes our medicine easy to swallow.

Emory's Gift makes me smile every time I look at its charming cover. I can't wait to pass it on.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
In reading W. Bruce Cameron's "Emory's Gift", one cannot help but reflect on John Irving's superior "A Prayer for Owen Meany." As was Owen, Charlie is small for his age. Both Owen and Charlie are beset with guilt emanating from the death of a mother. Both novels invoke a religious theme, one to its credit, the other less so. Each is an indictment of American policy, one foreign, the other domestic. Both inflict upon their readers' emotions with unerring accuracy the pain and passion characteristic of the lives of boys in their early teens.

The first 100 pages of "Emory's Gift" weave a disconnect for Charlie Hall: from his mother, Laura, who has died; from his father, George, who is too immersed in his own grief to care about Charlie; from his father's consort, Yvonne, whom Charlie deeply resents; from his boyhood friend and neighbor, Danny, who now scorns him. The reader at this point, as is essential in reading "A Prayer for Owen Meany", must credulously accept Charlie's October 4, 1974, connection with the entity who writes the name "EMORY" in the soft soil of the riverbank.

Pursuant to Charlie's affiliation with Emory, his life becomes a series of connections, some overwhelmingly positive, others distinctly negative. A virtual theme of the book is the castigation of male authority figures: Herman Hessler and his fellow Idaho Fish & Game agents, the IGAR attorney, Sheriff Nunnick and his deputies, Pastors Klausen and Jamie, Channel 6 TV producer Tony Alecci, the junior high school principal, "Bear Expert" Phillip T. Thorpe, and the smarmy psychiatrist all rate somewhere between inept and evil. Women receive far more favorable treatment. Kay, Margaret and Beth Shelburton, Joy Ebert, Nichole J. Singleton, and Sat Siri seem warm, compassionate and understanding. Even Yvonne Mandeville and Judge Reimers evidence positive traits.

The justice system is revealed as openly and fatally flawed. There is clearly no justice for Emory Bain, regardless of what he may be or represent. The sole objective of the Fish & Game Department, the animal rights organization, and local law enforcement would have resulted in his death. Only the wealthiest man in the region wielded sufficient influence and affluence to gain him a stay of execution. Does the fact that none of the 59 previously posted reviews of "Emory's Gift" even allude to this absence of due process evidence acquiescence?

The transformation of Jules McHenry from ardent hunter to ardent defender is perhaps as incredulous as Emory's writings on the wall. That "the message" was not written by Charlie seems incontrovertible, but it unfortunately seems out of context with anything Emory was or represents. It is not until the same penultimate chapter that the first word likely to expand one's vocabularly appears. The only other vocabularly enhancer is defined in the same sentence of the epilogue in which it occurs.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ryan crowther
I don't remember when I was so moved by a book. This is exceptional. I cried a lot and was so anxious that I looked forward to every chapter. The main story is a book about a young boy who had recently lost his mother. He had trouble communicating with his dad and coping with school. You remember middle school don't you?
A miracle enters their lives and the plot is heartwarming. The towns people gradually are drawn in but there is danger, too. This book has all the elements of danger, fright and most of all--love.
I was so surprised about the plot and characters.
What a talent W.Bruce Cameron has.

I give this book 10 Stars! *********
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
chris lange
Much like A Dog's Purpose, Emory's Gift explores reincarnation. Shortly after 13-year-old Charlie's mom dies from cancer, he is walking in the woods near his home in Idaho and comes face to face with a cougar. Just when the cougar is ready to pounce, it backs off and Charlie finds himself staring down a grizzly bear. Instead of being attacked, Charlie finds himself making a connection with the bear, which follows him home. The bear sticks around and starts to communicate with Charlie. The story unfolds around their relationship and what happens is nothing short of a leap of faith. The bear has a simple message of faith to deliver which of course causes a commotion in the small town.

The message of this story, while a bit religious, is something that will fill you with hope. It left me feeling very happy and hopeful. There is a lot of quiet humor in the book as well and the portrayal of Charlie as a teen is just perfect. The page turning moment hit me around page 200. The story just clicked and I became so caught up, I couldn't put it down until I finished it. This is a good clean read and is probably suitable for older teens.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
"Emory's Gift" is the story of a 13-year-old boy, Charlie Hall, whose much beloved mother has recently died and who is trying to cope with all the trials of early adolescence, and then some. His father is well-meaning but emotionally absent. His friends desert him when he needs them most, at the start of junior high school. He is small for his age, ungifted athletically, very bright, and awkward with girls--a perfect storm of teenage angst.

Into all this comes Emory, a huge grizzly bear, who is more than he seems to be at first glance. To tell more would be to give away important parts of the story; suffice it to say that Emory becomes a touchstone for Charlie and a litmus test for every human character in the book. If Charlie is the "hero" who must endure trials to find his destiny, Emory is the "animal/helper" whose guidance is essential. Charlie endures all tests and emerges having found a path through junior high school and into adult life.

While the target audience for this book is probably young adult, any animal lover will appreciate it. Well-written and insightful about human nature, it contains some spectacular descriptions of nature, but not so much that a reader would become bored. The author captures perfectly the emotions of a young teenage boy, and teens of either sex will be able to relate to Charlie. Adults will appreciate all over again that they got through this time of life, and will, it is hoped, look upon young teens with more empathy.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
EMORY'S GIFT tells of a father, emotionally crippled following the death of his wife, a son suffering from misplaced guilt, and a bear with human like qualities and the ability to communicate, who changed their lives. This sometimes amusing, sometime deeply moving and profound portrait of a father and son trying to salvage the tattered remnants of their lives reads like an autobiographical account of the events that shaped a young boys life and made him the man he is today.

The scenes between Charlie and Emory (the boy and the bear) while possessing a fairy tale quality still come across as being entirely possible. Perhaps it's because we want to believe in a world where animals are as important to our emotional and spiritual lives as humans, or maybe it's because the relationship between Charlie and Emory is so charming and enchanting OR.....maybe the idea of a world where goodness and love can triumph is so appealing we enjoy the feeling we get imagining it.

In the final analysis we are compelled to answer questions about our own needs, both spiritual and secular, and what part the animals that enrich our lives play in those needs. While not promoted as such, this would be a great book for the YA audience as well as anyone who loves a captivating story the leaves the reader with a case of the "warm fuzzys". Put it on your Christmas gift list along with author Cameron's first book A DOGS PURPOSE. They would make a great gift for those special "kids" in your life (whether they be 15 or 50)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
melissa segall
W. Bruce Cameron has written a unique and wonderful novel in EMORY'S GIFT. It is a story that you get involved in quickly. Father and son struggle around the death of Charlie's mother not too many months before. They handle their grief differently and the son becomes desperately lonely and angry, missing dialogue with his father and misunderstanding the control that no one had over his Mom's illness in her last days. Enter Emory, an unusual grizzly bear. Emory becomes the focus of the town and surrounding areas. A TV crew eventually shows up. At its deepest, however, this book is about relationships and life's larger meanings. It is a commentary on the early adolescent's quest for self-understanding. Charlie has a great sense of humor , and through seemingly self-deprecating comments teaches us about the inner workings of one young fellow's heart. Don't miss this engaging novel.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
suzy kelly
Wonderful book I enjoyed it alot I like that it took place outdoors and that Charlie the boy had a friend even though she was a bear which is even cooler I think it is a wonderful book and I like that it took place in northern Idaho that was cool.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nicole raynal
This book is absolutely fantastic! I was a huge fan of "A Dog's Purpose," written by the same author, and I can say without reservation that this one is every bit as satisfying. I am always nervous when an author I like decides to go in a different direction like this, but "Emory's Gift" is proof in my eyes that this author has more stories to tell. Personally, I'll be reading W. Bruce Cameron novels as long as he writes them.

As for this book, it was an unexpected treasure. It hooks you from word one, immediately interesting, keeping your interest throughout and leaves you yearning for more. It is the type of book that you'll contemplate re-reading the moment you finish. Like his last one, this book is a joy to read, the characters are very real and easy to connect with, and by the end you'll feel the way you do after a long vacation; it is refreshing and moving, you'll laugh and cry and you'll return to your life with a new and wonderful perspective. It reminds me of the books that first got me hooked on reading as a young man. Novels like "Ender's Game" and "Catcher in the Rye" come to mind. It takes a book of exceptionally high quality and readability to get someone reading at that time of life, and this one is of that caliber, without a doubt. I wish I had a young person to buy it for! Do yourself a favor and buy two copies of "Emory's Gift." One to keep for yourself and one to give away, you won't regret it.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
dave 25
I love animal books so there's a star for that.
The beginning of the book was good so the idea of the story gets a star.
Some of the plots are great that made me laugh, interesting and couldn't stop reading those chapters so that gets a star.
Now the empty stars.
Hated most of the climax and chapters. I mean really? so -star
Some characters were annoying, ending could have been better and generally the whole plot could have been better too. so -star.

Overall, if you love animals, not a crazy serious religious person, and want an okay story about an animal with intelligent, this would be one of the books to try.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
W. Bruce Cameron has written several fantastic books, most of which fall into the humor category (which this does not), and I found this to be my favorite of them all. Beautiful and believable story. Sweet, simple and true message. Brought tears to my eyes and gave me goosebumps. Emory is not just a bear. He is far from average. His appearance in young Charlie's life after the death of his mother is nothing short of a miracle. A book all ages can read and adore. While it's not touted as a young adult book, teens would no doubt relate to Charlie and what his life as a teenager in his small town was like. W. Bruce Cameron no doubt remembers quite well what it was like being a young boy as Charlie was wonderfully believable and I happened to like and care for him immensely. If you read "A dog's purpose" are interested in reading more of what the author has written, get this book. You won't be disappointed. If you haven't read anything by this author yet, get this book. You won't be disappointed.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
If this book is suppose to be a YA novel, then it is an excellent one. That is except for the bear part, which is only fair. If this is suppose to be a novel for all ages, it is totally only a fair one. As a YA novel, it does a good job exploring the life of a motherless boy named Charlie, who is about to enter junior high. Charlie is still dealing with his mother`s death, he is small for his age, he does not excel in any sport, he seems to have lost all his friends, and his father is no help at all due to his own silent grieving. All of this changes when a grizzly bear follows Charlie home, but most of it would have changed anyway without the bear. What actually altered Charlie's life in junior high was he discovered a sport he was good at, which made him popular with some of the boys, and he got a girl friend. Charlie's feelings about falling in love for the first time were really touching, as was his crush on an older teenager. He pictured himself getting married young to this older girl, and the reader knew this was a poignant wish of a motherless boy.

The bear was paramount in changing Charlie's relationship with his father, but the author could have come up with something more normal to accomplish that. So, why the bear? The description of Mr. Cameron's book says it is an "insightful look at how faith, trust, and unconditional love can heal a broken family and bridge the gaps that divide us". Was that suppose to describe the bear? Actually, the bear seemed to spend most of his time lying around on a couch in Charlie's garage eating frozen casseroles, which was suppose to make him really special. Why? Because he was acting like a human, instead of a real bear? Then, there was the transmigration part of the bear story. As someone who loves to read metaphysical books, I thought that part was going to be intriguing. Unfortunately, I was wrong. What exactly did the Civil War have to do with anything? The story was taking place in Idaho. Now, if the story was taking place in a state like Georgia, one wouldn't have blinked an eye about the Civil War connection. Except for the fact, there are no grizzly bears is Georgia. But Idaho? Did Idaho even take part in the Civil War?

Then, there was the concept of the bear being a savior of some type. At that point, I really began to believe the bear part of this story was actually suppose to be satirical, not sentimental. Only, if it was suppose to be satirical, it wasn't satirical enough. It just wasn't that funny. And finally, we have the message from the bear. I thought it had better be a humdinger of a message to save this bear story! It wasn't. It was...it was... probably comforting to some readers of this book. Just like the final scene between Charlie and the bear by the river. Some readers might see that as comforting or tender. I myself saw it as proof that the bear part of this story did not work in written form, but would probably work in a movie by DreamWorks. I don't like movies by DreamWorks.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
ellen janoski
This is a story of loss and love, sadness and hope, life and death. Overall it was beautiful. The story is about a boy named Charlie who lost his mom and his dad is too consumed in grief. He ends up befriending a grizzly bear. Even though this may sound ridiculous, it is pulled off very well. This story made so many emotions go through me. I finished it a couple days ago and have constantly thought of it since. It is one that will definitely stay with me. The only downfall about the book was there were a few parts that were a bit sluggish but it doesn't last too long. Now, I'm going to have to read the author's other book "A Dog's Purpose".
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
cheryl hill
Emory's Gift is the heartwarming, coming-of-age story of 13 year old Charlie Hall who cannot forgive himself over his imagined slights to his dying mother. His emotionally distant father is so engulfed in his own grief that he cannot comfort his young son. Charlie's chance encounter with a grizzly bear changes his perspective on life, and the ensuing relationship with the bear helps him to deal with the traumatizing aspect of discovering his place in the adolescent world. Emory the bear is much more than he seems, and the need to protect him forces Charlie to confide in his father. A strong bond is forged in their ultimate goal to save the bear. The emerging gift of love, trust and forgiveness brings father and son back together and helps their healing to begin. What an uplifting tale of a young boy coming into his own.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This is a very well-written story about a teenage boy and his unusual experience with a grizzly bear. It's almost like Stand By Me meets Grizzly Ben except the time period is the 70's and the bear has a message beyond companionship.

The story also covers the universal feelings kids share when they're in junior high school. The details of the characters and their experiences are brilliant. I thought the writing was excellent, and the story was quickly engaging and constantly changing.

I definitely recommend reading this book. Don't be deceived by thinking it's just a bear story. It's a treasure.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
In 1974 Idaho, thirteen years old Charlie Hall loses both his parents. His mom died from leukemia and his grieving dad George is not there for his runt of a son when the lad needs him most. Charlie is a loner who has no friends at school. In fact his former best buddy Dan wants to beat the snot out of Charlie to prove his toughness as a man.

A cougar attacks Charlie but a grizzly bear saves his life so to thank his savior the teen gives the animal the fish he caught. The bear and human seem to understand one another so the former writes his name in the dirt and his new friend does likewise: "Emory." On a barn wall Emory scribes he was once a civil war soldier with a message to tell. The shrinks assume Charlie uses the bear as a grief stricken coping device until his father gets hurt in a ranching accident. When the townsfolk try to put Emory to sleep, Charlie, seventh grader Beth Shelburton the daughter of his father's partner and George protect the bear.

This is an entertaining fable starring a boy all alone in trouble with a deep loss at a time he is undergoing adolescent changes. Emory's reincarnation personification never quite seems real while Charlie does. Fans or reincarnation tales would be better off with W. Bruce Cameron's whimsical A Dog's Purpose, but those readers who enjoy a tender sentimental coming of age historical will appreciate Emory's Gift to Charlie and others.

Harriet Klausner
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
erin benbow
If you are a skeptic, you might not like Emory's Gift. But, if you can handle a little bit of fictional fantasy, you'll be pleased with the writing. This heartfelt book would be great for young men to read. They're the ones who can truly understand the grief a freshman goes through every day between cafeteria food, gym class and talking to girls. Loved it. Thanks, Bruce!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
An unusual story about a boy and his . . . bear. I found this a little hard to take literally, but the story is a page turner, interesting and has a real feel to it as far as describing "Charlie's" feelings as a young boy who had just lost his mother. The book has a nostalgic feel to it. Definitely a good read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
diana hoekstra
Charlie, a 14 yr old boy, whose mother has recently died, is the main character. He is a ty;ical 14 yr old, with hormones raging and unsure of his place in the hierarchy of middle shcool life. He is also confused about his relationship to his father since his mother's passing. Charlies perception of his and Emory's (the bear) relationship help him to see the world in a more mature light. Emory's Gift is a very good book, an easy read for young adults and older.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
linda garfinkel
13-year-old Charlie, still grieving the loss of his mother, is having a hard time dealing with his uncommunicative father and the trials of being an 8th grade outcast. While out in the woods, he is befriended by a tame Grizzly Bear who claims to be a reincarnated civil war soldier with a message. When Charlie shelters the bear in his barn, things spiral out of control.

There was a lot I liked about the book--I liked Charlie and his budding romance with 7th grader Beth; the book moved well and I was kept in suspense waiting to find out what would happen with the bear and what the message would be . . . but what downgraded my rating from a 4 to a 3 was the message itself.

The other things that bothered me was that I had no idea this was a religious book--and would have liked to know that upfront. I'm also still not clear who the intended audience of the book is. From the description, I thought the book would be a good one for my elementary school library, but after reading it, it seems written more for adults . . . or maybe teens who want a break for the edgy stuff that's out there.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
christopher laney
I've always been fond of fairy tales wherein animals speak, bring messages, protect heroes, and generally consort with humans. Here's a modern day version worthy of Grimm with the dry wit we've come to expect each Sunday from Cameron's columns. Add a dash of tween-aged angst and confusion so achingly real that surely there must be more than a little autobiographical material therein. A sweet story--a real smile- and tear-jerker--but just a touch too long for the material.

A great summer read--pass it on to your kid!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jillian reid
Mr. Cameron has captured the junior innocence beautifully in his creation of Charlie and Beth. He has also captured the hope humans have that animals are gifts to be treasured and respected. A feel good book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This one hits all the right notes, and will be enjoyed by any reader from twelve up. The author hits all the right notes of how it feels to be in junior high, and the bond with Emory is refreshingly beieveable. It is just a cozy read, and would make a good family movie, too.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
gina davis
After reading A Dog's Purpose,(which is the best book I've read in a long time) I was so excited about reading Emory's Gift. I really did enjoy the story and could not put it down. Could not wait until I found out what the message was! Then when I did, it was like really.....guess I was looking for something more profound. It made me feel the same way as I did when I was young and read C.S. Lewis The Cronicles of Narnia...absolutly loved them until the end of the last book. I know it's fantasy, which does go along with the message, so guess thats why I was looking for something more real!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
kara leung
I grabbed this book when it first came out. It sounded like something different...and it certainly was. A most amazing book. Beautifully written, the story of Charlie Hall and Emory, the bear who befriends him, is a page turner. A feel good book, Emory's Gift is a gift for its readers. Give yourself the gift!
★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
The best thing about this book was the cover. My God, what has happened to the publishing industry? Where are the editors? Where are the watchdogs in said industry who should know better and are put in the position to promote good literature? Does a bear **** in the woods? No, just on pristine pages no trees or ink should have been wasted on. This dreck is an horribilis ursa MAJOR mess. The mere fact that so many people have found this a "5-star" read doesn't make it good. It just speaks volumes anymore for the taste of the texting, phone-bound society we live in. If you are of the opinion that, "50 Shades of Gray", "Flowers in the Attic", anything about the "walking dead", is worth spending your money on, I STILL beg you to think twice about wasting time and money on this mess of a book. Here's a suggestion if you need what this book lacked: "Nop's Trial".
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
carolyn abrams
I started this book with great anticipation as some of the previous reviewers had shown. Although I stated it was "wordy" in my title above and certainly contained way too much detail, I read it quickly, seeking out answers. Not to give spoilers....did we ever really understand the Civil War connection? although all was well for all involved by the end, just how did it ....realistically...all happen ..or for that matter..unrealistically? Some fantasy involved here. Our main character, Junior High age Charlie, had many problems that, unfortunately, almost all boys and girls, for that matter, go through in that very critical stage of their life. But.....as in most life situations, this too shall pass.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

To the critic, you do not know anything of his school, home life or responsabilites. So before you say something find out the backround.
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