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Southern Literary Fiction – FREE

River Jordan
Augusta Trobaugh
4 star Southern literary fiction
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Family secrets, redemption, and the power of love are Trobaugh’s themes in this affecting novel set in a small southern town in the not-too-distant past. Jordan is a thoughtful and dreamy child, who escapes her stepfather’s coldness and her mother’s distance through the understanding of Peony, the family cook, whose last name, probably not coincidentally, is also Jordan. Peony’s sister, Pansy, newly released from prison after serving time for accidentally killing her abusive husband, finds a place caring for Miss Amylee, Jordan’s elderly grandmother. These African-American, flower-named sisters, with their good cooking, good manners, and deep religious faith, find ways of dealing with a recalcitrant teen waitress, with Miss Amylee’s fading attention, and with their beloved but simpleminded brother. Trobaugh’s prose is deft and sweet: “‘My name is Isaiah’ [he] said in a way that made the word float out into the air all decorated with little curlicues.” A comforting read. – Booklist


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