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Souls Raised from the Dead

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  153 ratings  ·  15 reviews
In her first novel in more than ten years, Betts brings her narrative gifts to bear on the powerful and moving story of a Southern family in crisis. Armed with courage, humor, and a shaky faith in God, the family and their friends face a most devastating event--the slow death of a beloved child.
Paperback, 352 pages
Published February 9th 1995 by Touchstone Books (first published 1994)
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Ugh. I really wish I hadn't wasted my time with this one! This was for my book club and I'd really like to know who recommended it and why. The story is set in Chapel Hill, NC and follows Mary and her father Frank, three years before the story starts Mary's mother walks out on their family and it's just been Mary and her father ever since. Right before Mary turns 13 she is diagnosed with a serious kidney disease and the rest of the book is her dealing with the disease and her father basically fr ...more
Brian Krull
I suppose I don't really understand all the negative reviews: if you're looking to be distracted or entertained, you can read Evanovich or some other trash, but don't pick up a Doris Betts book. If, though, you're interested in realistic characters with real flaws and virtues, and the culture and mind-set of the post-presbyterian South, you might find it enjoyable.
Debbie Maskus
The book's opening scene provides fun and excitement that soon changes to boredom. The book contains no chapters, just one long and wordy descent into the chasm. The books description predicted the death of the main character, and that death was long in arriving. I expected a better novel. I am sure that Doris Betts thought she was emulating James Joyce when she wrote this stream on consciousness, but the method deteriorated the story.
Don't know why it took me so long to get around to reading Doris Betts, but she is a keeper. This book is about the loss of a child to an incurable illness. She has a family that loves her very much, in particular her father, a highway patrolman. She has two sets of grandparents and a mother who is way too self-absorbed to be a mother.

The book is set right here in the triangle, another thing that I liked about it.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Althea May
This book was really amazing. Though it was very sad, the characters were easy to relate to (or be really frustrated at) and it was a very well-thought out book, accurate in my opinion both medically and psychologically. Leominster Library has a copy.
Moira Crone
What I learned from this book is a new way for my heart to break. The little girl is wonderful, her family strange and real, and the lessons of the book have never left me. I read it ten years ago, still think about it.
May 04, 2009 Kelly marked it as to-read
Shelves: tbr-southern
Feeling unsure about reading this one. Love the fact that it's a Southern novel that includes horses (what could be better than that?!?), but not so sure I can handle the terminal illness thing.
Betts is a wonderful (and overlooked) author from North Carolina. In this novel, like all her work she creates power with understatement, emotion without sentimentality.
Pastor Pam Estes
Similar to Jodi Picoult's books on troubled families with sick children. Powerful perspective on the effects of violence
Vicki Mollenauer
Very sad. Not my favorite book, but I did love the little girl. The ending left me feeling kind of lost.
It took a little while to get into this book, but once I did, I couldn't put it down.
I love love love this book. I cried a lot reading it but it was beautiful!
Full of surprises. Very interesting North Carolina cultural tidbits
Larry Benfield
Great glimpse at the lives of people in North Carolina
Denise Gordon
Denise Gordon marked it as to-read
Sep 26, 2015
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Doris Betts (1932-2012), former Chancellor of the Fellowship of Southern Writers, wrote nine novels and three collections of short stories, including The Gentle Insurrection, The Sharp Teeth of Love, Souls Raised from the Dead, which won the Southern Book Award, and Beasts of the Southern Wild, which was a finalist for the National Book Award. Betts taught at the University of North Carolina at Ch ...more
More about Doris Betts...
Beasts of the Southern Wild and Other Stories The Sharp Teeth of Love Heading West The RIVER TO PICKLE BEACH The Astronomer and Other Stories

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