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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Patty's Pick for 12/26/13 - "Guests on Earth" by Lee Smith

Lee Smith's new novel, "Guests on Earth", gives a detailed look at the Highland Hospital in Asheville NC during the time Zelda Fitzgerald was in and out of the facility. As we follow main character, Evalina Toussaint, thru almost half of her life at the hospital, she flows from patient to staff and back, ending with staff. Her traumatic childhood led to her admittance to the Hospital when her mother dies. She finds solace in the hospital and discovers her musical talent on the keys of the director's baby grand piano. When she goes to school for her talent, she makes decisions that lead to her return to the hospital. 
As the book gives us a look at the local landmarks we know, the story carries us thru the book at a quick pace to find out what is going to happen next. 
The rich and famous use this Asheville hospital along with the not so famous. The Highland Hospital is on the cutting edge of mental health at its time. The book follows our fictional characters along with Zelda Fitzgerald and one of the RJReynolds heirs with their stay and treatment at the hospital. 
I really enjoy Lee Smith's novels. She transports you to the time and place in Asheville. The characters and places set the scene for a truly enjoyable story. She said she researched this novel, and with the fire at the hospital and the exciting ending, the book leaves you wanting to know more of the lives of the Eva and her friends.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Merry Christmas! From Patty's Picks!

Did you know there are 6 fewer days this year between Thanksgiving and Christmas? I am rapidly finding that fact all too true! There are not enough days, hours, or minutes in the week! 
Patty's Picks is taking a short break to shop, dine with the Book Club, wrap, and celebrate Christmas! See you soon & Merry Christmas! My next pick 
will be either 12/26 or 1/2! If time gets better before, I will post another pick earlier!                      

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Patty Pick - 'someone else's love story' by Joshilyn Jackson (12/5/13)

This book had me so hard and fast that I could hardly put it down. I was so invested in the life of Shandi and Natty. The southern humor that author, Joshilyn Jackson, brings to her books reminds me of my own family and growing up in the South. I can not always relate to her characters circumstances but I understand their feelings. She always bring that sense of home and family to her books. The places sound like somewhere I have lived or seen. 
You are pulling for Shandi and Natty from the opening page - who doesn't love a virgin mother. The use of intelligence, faith, and destiny are all interwoven to make for a thoroughly enjoyable book that must be finished as soon as you start the first chapter. 
The people - not characters, really- are human and feel like someone you should know, a cousin or sister. Walcott with his earnest friendship is one of my favorites. Where was he when I was in college? Paula with her strong self that conquers all but remains vulnerable to her two best friends. You want William to protect you and Bridget to pray for you. They mix up with robbers and bullets and VW beetles to win your heart over! I usually love Joshilyn Jackson's novels and this is one I will remember for a while!