Dorothy's Reviews > Peachtree Road

Peachtree Road by Anne Rivers Siddons
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Sep 06, 2010

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Read in September, 2010

Yes, I have to agree with The Baltimore Sun's report that Peachtree Road was a love story, a historical novel, a mystery, and a tragedy all wrapped into one. The love/hate relationship which existed between the two main characters, Shep and Lucy, can be compared to a plot found in a Shakespearean tragedy, because in the end they not only destroy themselves but almost everyone else who knew them. However, I do not agree that the book could be seen as another Gone With the Wind!
The love/hate relationship between these main characters begins when the book opens as spunky, little Lucy makes her grand entrance into the Bondurant household. " Something stinks, she says." These two little words turn seven year old Shep's innocent, pampered world upside down. Within seconds after that five year old Lucy reveals to him that his family is rich, where babies come from, and that he is too old not to have a room of his own!
He had never experienced such God awful honesty in his life before. This cousin of his was fearles, bright, independent, and willful. She was everything that he was not! It's no wonder that he was instantaneously caught under her spell. Yes, Shep was caught under that old Black Magic called, Love. Hearing her say words like Titty, Shitty, and the F--- word were second nature to her. This is how she enticed, denigrated, and controlled not only her audience, but him.
Shep said that Lucy had a dark side. He knew it, and yet he could not, for the most part, keep from being drawn into her danger zone.
Throughout the book, she takes him and others on a series of dangerous escapades that ultimately made me hate her. "What?" I asked myself would I have done if I had a child like her?" Shoot myself? Tear my hair out? Tear her hair out? Send her off to a nunnery? You, the reader, can try to solve the problem of this kid gone wrong in your own way!
When all is said and done, Ms. Siddons waits until the very end of the book to reveal the underlying cause of Lucy's outrageous behavior.
Ah! And therein lies the mystery. A mystery that can only be solved by reading this 816 page book.
This book afforded me insight into the tenor of the times, the lifestyle of the rich of Atlanta, a better understanding of what kids do and think as they try to figure out their own lives, and the lives of their friends, acquaintances, and parents. Looking back on it all, it's a wonder that any of us survive. As a matter of fact, some of us don't!
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message 1: by Virginia (new)

Virginia I think I deserve a medal for finally getting through this book. Far too much narrative, not enough dialog, and the ending is ambiguous in the extreme.

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