WHITE BANNERS by Lloyd C. Douglas


byLloyd C. Douglas

Kobo ebook | November 29, 2012

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Lloyd C. Douglas wrote many best-selling novels (including The Robe, and Magnificent Obsession).-White Banners-was first published in 1936. Douglas was one of the most popular American authors of his time, although he didn't write his first novel until he was 50 yrs. of age.

White Banners is set in a small town in Indiana, in 1919. On a dreary, cold and snowy day a peddler named Hannah Parmalee-appears at the door of a kind couple, Paul Ward- and his wife, Marcia, selling apple peelers. Asked by Mrs. Ward to come inside and warm up, Hannah sees they are struggling financially and are in need of some domestic help. She offers her services and becomes their cook and housekeeper for room and board.

Mr. Ward, a science teacher by day, is an inventor by night attempting to create something that will provide sufficient money for Marcia, their teenaged daughter Sally and their new baby, to have some luxuries in life. Hannah, who is extremely wise and helpful, comes up with some good ideas. She persuades Ward to sell old and useless furniture to raise money and make a place for his work in the basement.

Ward's invention, an "iceless icebox," is unintentionally revealed by Peter to some local mechanics, Joe Ellis and his brother Bill. When the Ellis brothers steal it and have it patented, Peter feels so bad about what he did that he lies when Ward asks him about it. In the meantime, Sally becomes ill with pneumonia.

White Banners embraces a thread that Lloyd C. Douglas carries throughout many of his works. That thread, is doing good when you know you will never receive recognition for it. Even more importantly, doing good without getting caught.

It is not a religious book like some of Douglas' more famous books-to-movie have been, but it does take an in-depth look at the struggles of lower and middle class life in America. At honesty. At integrity. The astonishing part is the book's application of divorce, single parenting, credit dangers, technology innovation, adoption, and many other topics, often discussed in the book between the maid and the professor.

Running up "White Banners" instead of 'white flags' means taking a new position--not surrendering, not quitting, regardless of what life has to toss in our path. The protagonist lives that life, and often shares her philosophy of life with others, young and old.

Hannah is noted for a great deal of practical wisdom, and gives impetuous Professor Ward the encouragement he needs to follow through with the invention of a refrigerator. When his first plans are stolen, she encourages him to come up with something better, rather than to waste his resources fighting a legal battle. Eventually he becomes a very successful man, and is able to give Hannah the encouragement and help she needs when she fears that her son is going to choose a life of wealthy indolence. Because Hannah has very strong ideas of class distinction and wants her son to become somebody important, she has never revealed to him that she is his mother.

Major themes in the story are nonresistance, personal integrity, courage, industry, forgiveness, and responsibility. There is also a little romance, some of it very touching. As to religion, there is an acknowledgement of a mysterious providential force of some kind, but the characters express uncertainty whether it be "They, He, or It" and generally seem embarrassed at the thought of being perceived to be superstitious. Their beliefs are based on personal experiences and logic, not on any written revelation.

Title:WHITE BANNERSFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:November 29, 2012Publisher:Download eBooksLanguage:English

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