Published by Grand Central Publishing on January 25, 2012
Genres: Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Fiction, Women's Fiction
A GROWN-UP KIND OF PRETTY is a powerful saga of three generations of women, plagued by hardships and torn by a devastating secret, yet inextricably joined by the bonds of family. Fifteen-year-old Mosey Slocumb-spirited, sassy, and on the cusp of womanhood-is shaken when a small grave is unearthed in the backyard, and determined to figure out why it's there. Liza, her stroke-ravaged mother, is haunted by choices she made as a teenager. But it is Jenny, Mosey's strong and big-hearted grandmother, whose maternal love braids together the strands of the women's shared past--and who will stop at nothing to defend their future.
Eight years ago, I picked up a hardback copy of Gods in Alabama by Joshilyn Jackson, and I have been a faithful disciple of everything she has written since boycotting my household chores for the day it took me to devour that delight of southern literature. As a southerner myself, I have a soft spot for novels that not only contain locales that I know and are familiar with, but the culture mindsets, cliches, and atmospheres. An educated and somewhat liberal southerner, I maintain that I am a hostage behind Mason Dixon lines; navigating among traditions and sentiments, cherished and antiquated, alike. Perhaps only other ‘enlightened’ southerners can understand being permeated by both pride and sometimes shame that is the nature of matriculating from the heart of the Bible Belt.
Jackson captures this with finesse, dark humor, and wit. A Grown Up Kind of Pretty is another installment of southern genius of one of my favorite writers. The veins of secrets have long circulated from the heart of the South and its literature. The roots of the secrets that this fabulous novel centers around will have you digging through pages of the story like a Clampett whose caught wind of ‘Texas tea’ beneath the ground. I loved the alternating point of views from the three women that the novel revolves around. Liza’s perspective is particularly unique and well done, as she knows most of the secrets, but because of a stroke, is unable to communicate them to anyone.
You will laugh, you will cry, and you will likely make Joshilyn Jackson your book wife. I already said yes.
Five out of Five Stars