“Still Breathing: My Journey with Love, Loss, and Reinvention,” by Katie Joy Duke

Reviewed by Donna Meredith A memoir centered around a stillbirth hardly sounds as if it could be full of light and spiritually uplifting, but that’s exactly what Katie Joy Duke’s story Still Breathing: My Journey with Love, Loss, and Reinvention (New Degree Press, May 2022) is. Stillbirth is far more prevalent than most realize, affecting […]

“Crooked Truth,” by Kristine F. Anderson

Try Audible Premium Plus and Get Up to Two Free Audiobooks Reviewed by Donna Meredith Crooked Truth, (Mercer University Press, 2020) Kristine F. Anderson’s outstanding debut novel, asks an important question: how much do we owe our family? Must we sacrifice all our hopes and dreams to accommodate them? The complex examination of one family’s […]

May Read of the Month: “In the Lonely Backwater,” by Valerie Nieman

Reviewed by Donna Meredith In the Lonely Backwater (Regal House Publishing, 2022) would be a grand read if it were only a clever psychological mystery or simply a unique coming-of-age story, but Valerie Nieman achieves so much more than that. With gorgeous description and elegant prose, Nieman transforms a North Carolina village and marina into […]

“The Marsh Bird,” by Anne Brooker James

Reviewed by Donna Meredith The Marsh Bird (Koehler Books Publishing, 2021), by Anne Brooker James, effectively uses the novel format to showcase the Gullah Geechee culture of the sea islands along the South Carolina and Georgia coast. The historical package is sweetened by an unusual love story set amidst the horrors of the Jim Crow […]

February Read of the Month: “Take a Left at Tomorrow,” by Renee Anduze

Reviewed by Donna Meredith The wild rebellion against authority that characterized the Sixties burns through the pages of Renee Anduze’s coming-of-age novel, Take a Left at Tomorrow (Twisted Road 2021). Those who lived through the decade’s changes will appreciate how expertly Anduze paints the mood of the time. Those born later will experience the upheavals […]

Donna Meredith Interviews Betsy Reeder

Donna Meredith interviews Betsy Reeder for Southern Literary Review. Reeder is the author of an historical trilogy: Madam’s Creek (2017), Broomstraw Ridge (2019), and her latest, Salt in Boiling Water (2022). These stories center around the lives and loves of characters caught up in vivid events of the Civil War and its aftermath in southern […]