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Reviews:
Adventures in Cartooning by James Sturm
Amulet 1: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi
Aya of Yop City by Marguerite Abouet and Clement Oubrerie
Bad Matter by Alexandra Duncan
The Curious Garden by Peter Brown
Civil War on Sunday (Magic Tree House #21) by Mary Pope Osborne
A Country Mouse in the Town House by Henrietta
Diary of a Fly by Doreen Cronin and Harry Bliss
Dingoes at Dinnertime (Magic Tree House #20) by Mary Pope Osborne
Dragon of the Red Dawn (Magic Tree House #37) by Mary Pope Osborne
Gossamer by Lois Lowry
Horrible Harry and the Ant Invasion by Suzy Kline
Hurry Freedom by Jerry Stanley
I'm Not Going to Chase the Cat Today! by Jessica Harper
Inside Time by Tim Sullivan
Inside a Zoo in the City by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
Katie Loves the Kittens by John Himmelman
Killing Mr. Griffin by Lois Duncan
The Last Surgeon by Michael Palmer
Lost Worlds: Adventures in the Tropical Rainforest by Bruce M. Beehler
Loudmouth George and the New Neighbors by Nancy Carlson
Mermaid by Robert Reed
Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli by Barbara Jean Hicks and Sue Hendra
Never Blood Enough by Joe Haldeman
The Nine Lives of Aristotle by Dick King Smith
The Order of Things by Barbara Ann Kipfer
Owly Volume 3: Flying Lessons by Andy Runton
Pigsty by Mark Teague
Poppleton by Cynthia Rylant

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Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Comments for In the Land of Cotton

In the Land of Cotton: 05/23/10

In the Land of Cotton cover art (Link goes to Powells)I am embarrassed by the length of time between reading (and loving) In the Land of Cotton by Martha A. Taylor and reviewing it. I keep a list of books I need to review but some how this book and a half dozen others didn't make it onto that list.

I read In the Land of Cotton just after reading her novel Outside the Lavender Closet. I commented in my review that her novel reads like a memoir. Here, though, is a memoir and it reads like a novel.

Taylor describes her childhood from the point she and her family moved to a new home in Tennessee. The family hires Lucy, an African American woman to clean the house and watch the children. Martha curious about Lucy's life follows her home one day and meets the rest of Lucy's family on a farm. It's been their land since the end of the Civil War and the only remnant of a the plantation that has since become the suburban neighborhood that Martha now lives in.

I read the book as a novel. It's written in that style. The author calls it a "docu-drama." Except for a map of Lucy's farm, there isn't much in the way of documentation. The book may very well be a very personal memoir. Whether it's completely fact, completely fiction or somewhere in the middle, doesn't bother me. It's a compelling read. There are a few editing oddities near the end and the book as a whole would benefit from another round of editing. That being said, I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

I received the book for review from the author.

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