Lydia Presley's Reviews > Secret Graces

Secret Graces by Kathryn Magendie
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Jun 04, 12

bookshelves: 2012, fiction, southern
Read from June 03 to 04, 2012

Kathryn Magendie has a way of taking the most quiet, unassuming story, and driving it home, bit by bit, until I feel like sobbing and hugging Virginia Kate to pieces. One of my favorite things about "southern" writing is how down-to-earth it is, and nothing is more down-to-earth than Virginia Kate and her brothers.

Then there's Rebekha - a woman who embodies everything that is a mother. She's warm, welcoming, thoughtful, insightful, supportive, loving, and selfless. With this character, Kathryn Magendie has created something that reminds me so very much of my own grandmother who passed away so many years ago now. I connected with Virginia Kate as she washed and dried dishes with Rebekha, as she woke quietly to make breakfast, to make things easier, and as she sought for the wisdom of her stepmother, a woman I wanted her to so very much dislike in the first book of this trilogy.

It's funny how characters win you over like that - in spite of everything against them they just creep inside, somewhat like this quiet story, and dig deep, finding all those old emotions and rekindling them and reminding their readers of memories long forgotten.

So when I think about southern books, I feel a warm glow and I open them with anticipation and hope and nostalgia, and I know when I open a book by Kathryn Magendie I won't be reading something that will preach at me or talk over me in an attempt to tell a story that I may or may not get. Instead, I'll be introduced to characters that I feel like I've known my whole life, and instead of losing myself in a strange world, I'll feel like I just came home.
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