Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand

Abdul Wahid looked confused, which was an improvement over the frown.

“You are very strange,” he said. “Are you saying it is wrong, stupid, to try to live a life of faith?”

“No, I think it is admirable,” said the Major. “But I think a life of faith must start with remembering that humility is the first virtue before God.”

“Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand against what?” I kept asking myself as I read this novel. “His last stand against an incredibly arrogant son? His materialistic sister-in-law, Marjorie, and niece, Jemima? His longing for the pair of Churchill guns, which his father was given by the Maharajah? Or, his stand against the ignorance displayed in a small British town toward another culture?”

Quite possibly, it could be his stand against loneliness. Being alone. Or, settling for a convenient love with Grace, when he could strive to have it all with his heart’s desire, Jasmina Ali.

Ultimately, I believe it to be his stand against pride. And this, perhaps, requires the greatest strength of all. When we ask for forgiveness, when we recognize our own faults, when we stand for what is good and right and true, this is our most important stand.

I loved Major Pettigrew. I loved his quiet observations on life. I loved the lessons that he learned, and the way he taught me as he went, reminding me that the importance of self isn’t so important after all.

“I longed for the day when I could look important to a lot of people who I felt were more important than I,” said the Major. “I was arrogant. It must be genetic.”

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25 thoughts on “Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand”

  1. This book has been on my TBR list for a while. I keep seeing good reviews all around the blogosphere. Maybe one of these days I will get around to reading it. lol 🙂


  2. I've seen it written and mentioned so often and have wondered why they chose Pettigrew – was it trying to link into Miss Pettigrew and that slightly put me off reading it. Now I understand a little more and shall look out for it in the second hand bookshops.


  3. I gave this to my mom and she loved it! A girl friend of mine read it and loved it. Nan read it and loved it. I really need to get myself a copy and see what all the fuss is about, now don't I? 😉


  4. Loved your thoughts on this book. Its on the top of my TBR pile and I'm wondering why I just haven't picked it up already. Sounds like its going to be such a great read. I'm excited!


  5. Lovely review. But if you'll pardon a silly question, is "Major Pettigrew" any relation to "Miss Pettigrew" or is the surname a coincidence?


  6. Not a silly question, dear ds. There is no relationship between the two, just a coincidence. However, when I was reading it I kept thinking of she Who Lived For a Day. 😉


  7. This one's on my wish list, but I think it's going to be a while before I acquire a copy, since I'm on a book-buying ban and I have to wait for a swap copy. I'm glad you enjoyed it! It's gotten very positive reviews. And, wahoo!!! You brought back your wonderful header! Even my husband loves it. 🙂


  8. I must admit, Nancy, that your affection for it was a big reason I brought it back. And if your husband likes it, and my husband likes it, then it's a keeper for sure! Thanks for telling me. xoxop.s. Apparently, the kitties wanted to make origami snowflakes today. I left a few pieces of the sparkly paper out, as I'm trying to decipher the final step in the directions, and came home to several pieces scattered across the kitchen floor. They probably were confused too…


  9. I keep stumbling across this book on many blogs and, yet (and perhaps it's a good thing) I don't know much about it except it's getting rave reviews! I hope to read this soon…after all my thousands of books!


  10. I must read this book, thanks to your thought-provoking review. I've put a hold on it at our public library… last I checked my place in line is 101.


  11. I love your thoughts on what the title might be referring to. I'm so glad you liked it, though. It sounds like an instant classic. Thanks for being on this tour!


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