Dianne Bynum’s Book Review

“The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek”

This book was a fun surprise. My friend got me interested in this book when she asked me if I’d ever heard about the Blue people of Kentucky. I had, of course, I’ve lived in Kentucky my whole life. We’re known for moonshine, young brides and horse racing. The Blue people were another odd piece of our crazy quilt history. I knew that they had existed but they were just another cringe causing claim to fame for my home state.

I live in Kentucky and have spent some hot summers in the Appalachian Mountains. My family helped with several church ministries in the mountains. I’ve driven on narrow roads created by heavy trucks burdened with dirty coal. I’ve seen tiny houses tucked in dark hollers. I know the suspicious eyes of people that didn’t trust anyone but Mountain people. Those summers taught me a respect for these proud people that lived difficult isolated lives. It was my first experience with real poverty, but it was a financial poverty, not a poverty of spirit. Their beautiful voices, meticulous gardens, and pride in their beautiful mountains were things I never forgot. I was curious to learn more.

The author tells a beautiful story of a strong woman sprinkled with some interesting facts about the Blues. She is respectful of the subject with reliable documentation and photos. I’d never heard of the Book Women and I was touched to know that was a part of our Kentucky heritage. I’m glad I was curious enough to give this book a try.

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13 Comments

  1. Dianne, Thank you for this post. I, too have never heard of them, and as a native Kentuckian, knew of the other typecasting appellations that we are better known for in The Bluegrass State. This will be on my to do list and had you not written your review, I would never had known about The Blues.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You are spot on! I had never heard of the blue people and found this book fascinating from that aspect as well as Eleanor Roosevelt’s program of how to distribute library books to remote places at that time.

    Another book you might enjoy is ‘The Secrets We Kept’ by Lara Prescott. It is historical fiction set in the 50’a when the CIA was coming into existence, the Cold War and how the CIA used literature as a tool of warfare, complete with Unknown female spies. It is the true story of how they worked to secretly distribute back into Russia, the book Dr. Zhivago by Russian Boris Pasternak. Because of the book’s anti-Russian leaning (although Boris said it was merely a love story), it was banned in Russia and represents well how Boris, his confidant Olga and others were treated during this time in history. The strength of the Party was so immense that when he received the Nobel Prize for it, he declined

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My friend, Becky, told me about this book, I have it on the waiting list, at the Library, your review has me even more excited to read it. Thank you, Sue, I love reading your blog 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I always enjoy reading your blogs and would be disappointed if you stopped. Even though I don’t always respond, there are many interesting facts and perspectives presented.

    Regarding the book, I don’t think I had heard of the Blues even though I have many friends from Eastern KY whom I met at Berea College and from co-teachers Who came from that area. I will put the book on my list.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks Dianne for bringing this book to my attention. I ordered it (based on your review) and devoured it in four days. The story was well researched and the writing was exceptional. I could see the overarching theme being played out in our society today as I unraveled the many layers in this captivating novel. I am a better person for having read this book.

    Liked by 2 people

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