Do you love to read? Are you looking for a new novel to curl up with when you get a moment to yourself? We have quite a few avid readers on our team at Daily Mom, and we want to connect with other readers out there. Introducing the Daily Mom Book Club! We will share with you the best in new books that we are reading and hope you will read them as well and come back and let us know what you think. Our first book club book is The Truthful Story by Helen Stine.
In South Carolina, the moss-draped Lowcountry landscape is about as influential as tradition and family. In The Truthful Story, Helen Stine uses her own childhood memories and love of the Lowcountry to craft a southern coming-of-age story that shows how three generations of women are connected to the past, the land, and each other.
Having come back to Gibson Island after her father lost his job in California, ten-year-old Genny is happy to be back near Grannie. Like her great-grandmother Genevieve and like Nannie, Genny has a gift for seeing and hearing things no one else can, but when Nannie dies suddenly, Genny is left to figure out this gift on her own. Mama’s grief over losing Nannie makes it impossible to talk to her, and Genny feels farther and farther away from Mama when all she wants is to tell her that Nannie isn’t really gone.
While a local man, Jeffrey Landry, is trying to convince the community to reopen a long abandoned oyster factory on the river, Genny is trying to figure out how she’s connected to the Gibson women who came before her and to Gibson Island. Drawing on a well-known quote from the French novel The Little Prince, “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye,” Genny searches for the truth about her Nannie’s passing, a boy named Joe, the oyster factory, and how to help Mama.
If you’ve ever visited Charleston or just appreciate a good Southern novel, you should add The Truthful Story to your reading list. Stine creates a vivid setting, quickly drawing you into the Lowcountry and onto Gibson Island. Using strong women rooted in the land and in generations past, she demonstrates the powerful relationship between mothers and their children. Though at times the story seems too insightful to be told by a ten-year-old narrator, you’ll enjoy the well-developed and complex characters. As a mother, your heart will break for Genny, and as a daughter, you’ll understand Genny’s longing for her lost grandmother and her desperate need to connect with her mother. The slowly-building suspense will keep you reading to the end.
An enjoyable read you can curl up on the couch with during naptime or after the kids have gone to bed, The Truthful Story is a novel about the deep roots that help relationships survive pain and loss. It’ll have you searching for your unexplainable gift that you’ll likely find in the love you have for your own family.