This is a tricky book to sample, as it is eight interconnected stories set in a matryoshka structure. I cannot stress how much I love this book. I wrote it as exactly the sort of novel I would want to read. It’s dark, and it’s a bit different. Refer to the overview here if you haven’t seen that already. It might help make some sense. And you can read the first 25 pages or so here.
*The novel formerly known as And Yet the Bottle Tree’s Song is Sadder than Mine
So when I first started writing this book, it was an adult novel. Sure the main character is a teenage girl, but I hadn’t considered trying my hand at YA lit. Once I got Lulu through her journey and into South Carolina, I decided to make it a book for teen readers. My younger daughter always loved realistic fiction, and I wrote this with her in mind. I’ve got a big soft spot in my heart for this strong, feisty protagonist. You can read the first 20 or so pages here.
Lucinda Louise Maxwell has been through some shit. Her happy normal teenage existence in the North Carolina mountains is shattered on Christmas Eve, 2009, when her mother and stepfather die in a freak accident. Luckily for her she has her father, and she goes to live with him and his wife in Boston. Unprepared for the arrival of a precocious 15-year-old girl in their lives, they quickly ship her back home. Well, a hundred miles or so from home. But it’s OK, she believes she’ll be attending a prestigious boarding school. Continue reading
Jennie is a good person. Really. She tries so very hard to be a godly woman, loving mother, attractive wife, attentive neighbor and dutiful sister, stepmother, daughter, and aunt. The problem is that everyone keeps getting in the way of her success. If it weren’t for circumstances and, well, people, she could be just about perfect. Echoed by the fall of the Twin Towers, her world comes crashing down as she tries to make sense of her projections and preconceptions. Sadly, heroic action does not always follow good intentions.
At 61,000 words, The Truth is Hard to Tell is set in Charleston, SC, in September of 2001. Within the matryoshka structure are the interrelated stories of eight characters that together form one complete narrative. This is slightly dark, upmarket adult fiction with book club potential. Continue reading