George's Reviews > Dimestore: A Writer's Life

Dimestore by Lee  Smith
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really liked it
bookshelves: lacpl-ebook, non-fiction, appalachia


“Whether we are writing fiction or nonfiction, journaling or writing for publication, writing itself is an inherently therapeutic activity. Simply to line up words one after another upon a page is to create some order where it did not exist, to give a recognizable shape to the chaos of our lives.” (Kindle Locations 1933-1935)

I quite enjoyed reading Lee Smith’s autobiographical essays in Dimestore: A Writer’s Life. She offers a close-up and very personal look at Appalachian life in the 1950s/60s.

My personal experience in Appalachia, in the coal mining hills of Southeast Kentucky, was all too brief—for only the first eight months of 1957—but left lasting and loving impressions of the place, of the people, of the culture, and of the hardscrabble life. Lee Smith’s essays bring back precious memories.

Recommendation: Absolutely and highly.

“I’m seventy, an age that has brought no wisdom. When I was young, I always thought the geezers knew some things I didn’t; the sad little secret is, we don’t.” (Kindle Locations 1995-1996).

Algonquin Books. Kindle Edition. 2168 Kindle Locations
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Reading Progress

March 31, 2016 – Shelved
March 31, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
April 12, 2016 – Started Reading
April 12, 2016 – Shelved as: lacpl-ebook
April 12, 2016 –
April 14, 2016 –
April 14, 2016 – Finished Reading
April 15, 2016 – Shelved as: non-fiction
January 3, 2017 – Shelved as: appalachia

Comments Showing 1-6 of 6 (6 new)

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Cheri Added!

George Cheri, You won't regret it.

Cheri Thank you, George!

George You're welcome, Cheri.

message 5: by Kevin (last edited Jan 07, 2017 07:15AM) (new)

Kevin Ansbro Great work, George.
Perhaps you should write a piece about your coal mining experience back in 1957? Great that you have mostly happy memories.

George A very pleasant fantasy, Kevin. If I ever did, though, I'd have to call it Five Rooms and Path. That was the first and only time I ever lived without indoor plumbing. Ten people, five rooms, a coal-burning fireplace, a water pump on the back porch, and one outhouse. It was an experience to remember. And to treasure.

I don't remember much about coal mining, though. I think most of the mines were already played out by then. There may have been a bit a strip-mining going on, back of Lily.

Can't believe that was sixty, brief, years ago. Back in 'ancient' times.

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