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The Handsome Road (Plantation Trilogy #2)

4.03  ·  Rating Details ·  669 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews

The Old South was a world of extremes. Ann Sheramy Larne, a hoop-skirted belle, lived among stately mansions and dozens of Negro Servants. Corrie May Upjohn was "po' white trash," living in slavelike squalor down on the docks.

The Civil War transformed their world.

For Ann, the war meant disaaster-the end of everything she had known. But for Corrie
Paperback, 300 pages
Published January 1st 1974 by Pocket (first published January 1st 1938)
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Bree (AnotherLookBook)
Dec 28, 2014 Bree (AnotherLookBook) rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fans of Civil War-era historical fiction
A historical novel about two women whose lives are changed by the American Civil War, and whose worlds repeatedly intersect, often in unexpected ways. 1949.

Full review (and recommendations of other little-known books!) at Another look book

A high-quality historical fiction that afforded me some nice escapism during the final parts of a very cold winter. I especially appreciated being exposed--for basically the first time--to the plights of the poor, white laboring class during the Civil War-era S
Kate Quinn
May 07, 2009 Kate Quinn rated it really liked it
Handsome Road is the second in Gwen Bristow's Plantation Trilogy, picking up several generations down the line with two very different women in the American Civil War. Ann is the pampered young wife of a Louisiana planter; Corrie May is a dockyard cousin who fights for survival in a society where slaves are used for most of the work and she is looked down on as white trash. The Civil War up-ends most of that, and both girls endure parallel experiences of loss, luxury, poverty, and motherhood. Th ...more
Oct 12, 2009 Misfit rated it really liked it
Shelves: fol-sale
This book takes the story of the Larne, Sheramy and UpJohn families through the civil war and it's aftermath. The author provides a very realistic portrayal of the upper class Larnes and Sheramys and the poor UpJohns, the latter having to struggle for work as the upper class had the slave labor to do most of the work for "free". Also, the turnaround of the cultures in the aftermath of the civil war, the Larnes and Sheramys having to struggle to survive and keep their plantations while Corrie May ...more
Apr 03, 2014 Tweety rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone interested in a unique view of the Civil War
Recommended to Tweety by: Misfit
How is it I enjoyed this so much even when I disliked each character by turns?
What a great novel! This is why I love a historical fiction. This is a perfect example of this genre.

Let's be more specific.

Firstly, the book is full of historical information. Not only about facts like battles, political events and so on, but first of all about how the people lived then, what they ate, what they wore, how the world around them looked like. And, as it is always in Bristow books, I was feeling as I would have lived in this world. I want to stress that it isn't a simple task. A wr
Trudy Carlson
Sep 28, 2014 Trudy Carlson rated it liked it
This was the 2nd book in the trilogy and takes place up to and after the civil war. It is from the point of view of Corrie Mae, a "white trash" girl and Anne Larne, a plantation artistocrat and the difference in their living circumstances.

There is a line in the book:

"Nigger pick de cotton, nigger tote de load,
Nigger build de levell foh de ribber to smash,
Nigger nebber walk up de handsome road,
But I radder be a nigger dan po' white trash!"

This sums up the book The story focuses on the difference
Oct 29, 2010 Janetkc7wvy rated it really liked it
This is the second in a Trilogy. The first one "Deep Summer" and the last "This Side of Glory" Being set in the Civil War of course I had to read it.
The forward to the book starts out "On the 14th of March, 1794, Eli Whitney patented his cotton-gin. It was one of the greatest disasters that ever fell on the United States." (a little different than you learn in school). He goes on to explain "The cotton-gin was bound to come sometime. Too many people were looking for it. But if it had been delay
Nov 28, 2009 Mary rated it really liked it
Recommended to Mary by: wanted to read more by the author of Jubilee Trail
The Handome Road brings some of the characters from Deep Summer further along in history. Telling the story of the causes of the civil war from various viewpoints makes it easier to understand why the South defended slavery. The plantation owners needed the slaves and the poor whites could never rise from poverty because who would pay them to work when slaves would work for nothing? That meant they had nothing to fight for. Only the slaves had anything to gain and even they were sometimes living ...more
Jul 28, 2013 LemonLinda rated it really liked it
The second book of this trilogy is set in Louisiana along River Road immediately before, during and after the Civil War. It juxtaposes plantation life with that of the "poor white trash". Life at Ardeith Plantation is glamorous and extravagant until the war takes a toll and will only endure with determination and acceptance that life has now changed. The lives on the other side of town take on a prominence never dreamed of only to be dashed, but yet with the changes made after the war there is a ...more
Carla Turcotte
Jan 03, 2016 Carla Turcotte rated it really liked it
4.5 stars. The Handsome Road is the second book of Gwen Bristow's Plantation Trilogy and I actually like this one better than the first book. The time period is pre- to post-civil war and it continues the story of the Larne/Sheridan family, now expanded into walks of life other than the big plantation dwellers. Corrie May Upjohn's life differs vastly from that of Anne Larne. I love the history, detail, and complex characters. I'm looking forward to reading the final book in the trilogy soon.
Nov 17, 2016 Debbi rated it really liked it
This is the second book of, "The Plantation Trilogy", and it didn't disappoint. It takes place during the Civil War and goes back and forth between two grandchildren of Delores, the poor white trash gal that Caleb accidently married in book one. One is a grand plantation lady who has no idea of this ancestry and the other fights for life in the slums of New Orleans. Great story.
Louisiana Mitte des 19. Jahrhunderts. Die 14-jährige Corrie May Upjohn gehört zu den “armen Weißen” des Landes, denen es oft schlechter geht als beispielsweise den Haussklaven der reichen Plantagenbesitzer. Doch sie hat den Ehrgeiz, etwas zu erreichen in ihrem Leben. Anne Sheramy hingegen ist eine Tochter des Südstaatenadels und eine Nachfahrin der Sheramys aus ”Tiefer Süden”, ebenso wie ihr Freund Denis Larne. Auch Corrie May ist entfernt mit diesen verwandt, was jedoch keiner ahnt, auch wenn i ...more
Aug 25, 2015 Pam rated it it was amazing
The Handsome Road is book two of the Plantation trilogy by Gwen Bristow. This book too kept me reading it until it was finished. It was a great book too. This book takes place years after the first one ended. The original settlers and their children have all died and it is now their grandchildren and great-grandchildren who are on the plantation and in the surrounding town.
Another Denis Larne now runs Ardeith plantation. He is getting married to Ann Sheramy and his mother and little sister are
The beginning ad ending of the United States Civil War

Book two of the Plantation Trilogy details much information about a once aristocratic way of life for large Plantation owners in Louisiana and thr thousands of slaves upon whose lives of tragedy and back breaking labor in the cotton and sugar cane fields that made it all possible. It also goes into some detail about poor white Southerners and the influence of slavery on their capacity to earn a bare bones existance to keep their families fed
Aug 20, 2014 Jan rated it liked it
This is the second in the Plantation trilogy (see my review for Deep Summer (#1). The time has shifted to the Civil War, with predictable consequences for aristocratic planters. But, agreeably, this time the focus is on one of the "white trash" characters, who resents the louche aristocrats and determines to make her own destiny. Of course, that means shacking up with the post Civil War carpetbagger villain, but I love how even when she is once again destitute, she triumphs in the end thanks to ...more
Aug 15, 2015 Beth rated it it was amazing
Read Gone With The Wind as a teenager. Enjoyed it very much and I also saw the movie.

The Handsome Road is the real thing! Gwen Bristow delivers a riveting read which is a continuation of the Plantation trilogy.

The characters, historical detail and storyline are so wonderfully done. I was enthralled with this novel as I have been with all of this authors writing. This is historical fiction at it's very best.
Susan Willingham
May 21, 2012 Susan Willingham rated it it was amazing
This was the 2nd book of the Plantation Trilogy, and much longer. I finally got to understand the character Corrie May Upjohn that I had heard so much about in the third book.

I had to order this book from the Cobb County Inter Library Loan. It came from Mercer University, and originally it was in the library of Betsy Tift College. Did I mention that Betsy Willingham Tift was my husband's grandfather's sister? Pretty ironic.
Mar 29, 2010 Christa rated it it was ok
2nd in the plantation series. this book dragged on and on and seemed to have no point or plot. Maybe it was just intended to be a bridge from the first to the third book in the series. My local library system does not have the third book, and I am not inclined to order it on amazon at this point. Such a let down after reading Celia Garth.
Apr 09, 2008 Emily rated it liked it
This was a little more serious than Bristow's normally have been for me. It seemed like one bad thing after another kept happening to the characters. I did find it an entertaining way to learn more about the Civil War and it gave me a few outlooks to consider that I'd never thought of before. I didn't love it, but I didn't stop reading it either!
Jul 05, 2008 Karen rated it really liked it
The second book in the "Plantation Trilogy." I enjoyed it just as much as the first one, perhaps even a little more. Bristow is great at showing the effects of the Civil War on different classes of people. Her writing is vivid and kept me turning the pages to see what was going to happen next to poor Ann and Corrie May. On to the next!
May 18, 2015 Terri rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Covers the lives of two white women before, during, and after the Civil War. It's a bit of a discussion of class struggle. One woman is "poor white trash" while the other has been raised in privilege as a planter's daughter. As the Civil War rages, their lives are altered forever and both women take their turn struggling to survive while raising a son in the post war South.
Dec 28, 2011 HeavyReader rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of historical fiction/romance
Shelves: fiction, louisiana
When I saw the cover of this book, I knew this series was the one I was looking for. I sure do remember that cover.

I read all three books in this trilogy when I was in middle school or early high school. I was really into them because they were set in Louisiana. I was into historical fiction/romance in those days. I really liked this book (and the other two) at the time I read them.
Jul 05, 2015 Kip rated it really liked it
Absolutely wonderful perspective of the plantation rich and the cajun poor in Natchez, MS. The moonlights and magnolia South comes alive with visions of hoop skirts, ready-called black servants, wealth, and privilege - all seen through the eyes of a white trash poor cajun girl.
Apr 15, 2015 Patricia rated it really liked it
This author does a good job of enlightening the reader as to the plight of poor whites during the Civil War. She does a good job of getting you to care about the characters. I'm not impressed with some of the unnecessary dialogue and there are some sentence fluency issues.
April Dinucci
Jun 01, 2009 April Dinucci rated it really liked it
The second book of the Plantation series was certainly the most tragic and depressing, but I loved the way Bristow makes the reader aware of such a very intense and misundrestood war and all the affects it had on differnet classes of people. I give this book a 3.5!
Nov 04, 2015 Judy rated it liked it
I read this book long ago, when I was in high school. I suspect that it was a book club edition that Mom had on her shelves. While I liked Bristow back then, I have no desire to pick up another now.
May 23, 2010 Steph rated it liked it
Good book in that you saw a different view point of history than you usually get with Civil War Era material. Not extremely exciting, nor does it have any real defining moments for me. An okay read for someone looking for a little history in thier readings.
Marci LeHew
Apr 18, 2016 Marci LeHew rated it it was amazing
This one wasn't quite as good as the first one but still a good read & set in my favorite time period, the Civil War era.
Aug 24, 2011 Shelly rated it really liked it
Very good story
Laurel Fallon
Jul 24, 2016 Laurel Fallon rated it really liked it
First book of hers that I have read. I enjoyed this historical fiction and learned a few things along the way. Looking forward to reading more of hers.
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American author and journalist. She studied at Columbia University and afterwards wrote for a number of literary magazines and journals. Eventually she moved to New Orleans, and worked at the Times-Picayune. She became interested in longer forms of writing—novels and short stories—through her husband, screenwriter Bruce Manning, and published her first novel in 1929.

Bristow reached the pinnacle o
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Other Books in the Series

Plantation Trilogy (3 books)
  • Deep Summer (Plantation Trilogy, #1)
  • This Side of Glory (Plantation Trilogy, #3)

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“the war was over and you had to riot in foolishness lest you remember you were dancing over a million graves. By” 2 likes
“What was the use of fighting unless you could see something ahead to fight for?” 1 likes
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