Thursday, October 2, 2008

Stormy Weather (2007)

A few years back I found the perfect book for me. It was called Enemy Women and dealt with the Civil War in Southeastern Missouri. Author Paulette Jiles is a poet and memoirist and her writing is lyrical in this book. So the book appealed to me on a number of levels. Each chapter begins with an extract from a real letter or relevant document dealing with the terrible times and the conditions that people in that part of the country were forced to endure. The author didn't use quotation marks for her dialogue but it caused me no trouble.

What I found remarkable is the number of 'enemy women' and how they were imprisoned and treated. I am constantly amazed at the important parts of our history that never surface in an ordinary person's lifetime.

So, of course, I had to read Ms. Jiles new book. It is beautifully written and compelling in an entirely different way. While Enemy Women was compared with Cold Mountain, Story Weather has been compared with Grapes of Wrath.

It is a life affirming story of four women who overcome and live through the depression to make better lives for themselves through tenacity and love. Once I got started, I couldn't put it down.

Both these books are worthy of attention.

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