Sunday, August 23, 2009

Highly Recommended

If you have not read ‘A Virtuous Women’ by Kaye Gibbons, you are missing out on a great love story. I first read this book in 1998 and it is by far one of my favorites. It is not on the banned books list, but I highly recommend it.

Beautifully written, ‘A Virtuous Women’, is the quiet love story of Ruby Pitt Woodrow, daughter of a rich farmer, and Jack Stokes, a tenant farmer. At first they seem an unlikely match, Ruby, although 20 years younger than Jack, is already widowed. Jack, unattractive and unsuccessful, has never been married; both have had tough lives. Ruby is alienated from her parents due to her brief marriage prior to Jack, which was a disaster. She is working as a maid when she meets Jack. Together they find, if not what they were looking for, a sense of completeness. Early in the book, we know that Ruby dies from lung cancer and Jack is completely lost without her. Short and powerful read; an avid reader could finish it in one sitting. Be sure to have a box of Kleenex nearby, it will definitely move you to tears.

Although I haven’t yet read it, Kaye Gibbons is the author of another book with great reviews and it’s also on my list of books to read—‘Charms for the Easy Life’. Yes, I’m trying to make your ‘to read’ list as long as mine. :~)

The observance of Banned Books Week is a good excuse to pick up the highly acclaimed autobiography of Maya Angelou, ‘I Know Why the Caged Birds Sing’. Not that you need an excuse, this is definitely a must read.

At age three, Maya and her brother are sent to Stamps, AR to live with her grandmother after her parents are divorced. It is there that she experiences the horrors of racism and begins to lose her self-confidence. At age eight, she reunites with her mother in St. Louis but is sexually abused by her mother’s live-in boyfriend. At one point, she runs away and lives on the street and sleeps in cars. Finally, following a pregnancy at seventeen, she began to find her voice and is determined to become a strong woman and mother to her child. This is truly a rag to riches story that will keep you on edge ‘til the end.

No comments:

Post a Comment