Publication Date: 20th January 2012
Book Source: Premier Virtual Author Book Tours
Synopsis: After thirteen years on the run Violet McLaughlin returns to Carter’s Crossing, South Carolina, in 1962, with her young daughter, Sassy. The Crossing is right outside of Beaufort and the turmoil of the Civil Rights movement will forever leave its scars on the young and impressionable girl. As Sassy stands before the imposing white farmhouse for the first time, with no knowledge of her history but that the McLaughlin's are her kin, Sassy begins a journey that will tear her apart before it heals her. Growing up among secrets that will forever damage her relationship with her mother, she attempts to make sense of her past. But will her passion for art and her love for Thomas Tierney be enough to sustain her future? Will the puzzles she must solve to discover who she is be worth the journey?
I really do love Southern fiction, there's just something about it that speaks to my soul.
The Story of Sassy Sweetwater is a darker story than say Beth Hoffman's Looking For Me, but equally atmospheric. The bigotry and unrest of the Civil Rights movement, the beauty of the McLaughlin's grand home and the surrounding landscape drops you right in the south with all its charm, prejudice and quirky characters.
I think it was the prettiest day I'd ever seen. Mama used to say that some days are downright friendly and that nature was just like a person, either snarling at you like a fierce wind, crapping on you like a storm, or loving you up like the sun.
But be prepared, this dysfunctional family, their heartaches and tragedies sometimes makes for difficult reading. The appalling in-family violence and sexual abuse affected generations of the McLaughlin family and Uncle Liam and Granddaddy Seamus made my skin crawl ... "Uncle Liam was weird as false teeth in a pickle jar." I have to confess I cheered a little when Grandma Edna finally took matters into her own capable hands.
Grandma Edna seemed quite the intimidating character initially, especially from 13 year old Sassy's perspective but I quickly grew fond of the stern matriarch with her soft heart. Dudley and Thomas weren't far behind.
Sassy's journey is a tumultuous one and I didn't always like her but she's a survivor. And take heart, it may seem like I'm giving something away but believe me you need hope that this girl shaped by the rough hand she was dealt eventually finds true happiness.
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