Review of "Like Molasses in the Wintertime" by Eunice Hargett

I wanted to love this book!...but I couldn't. I love Southern fiction and African-American fiction, and while I thoroughly enjoyed the first third or so of this novel, it seemed to unravel into a disjointed collection of platitudes; where I was expecting poignant revelation, the story fell flat. Such interesting themes--racism, sexuality, and religion--are simply not explored to the level of promise of the beginning of the book. Neither is the story rescued by the charm of the South. Finally, and sadly, the kindle edition is riddled with typos, from stray apostrophes and quotation marks to words like "every" instead of "ever," and these were not verbiage and voice choices made by the author. In short, it's an OK book if you only spend six bucks for the kindle version, but I would recommend "The Help," "Rush Home Road," "Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl," or "The Year of Jubilo" instead.

Review of "Midwife of the Blue Ridge" by Christine Blevins

This was an entertaining read. I agree with several other reviewers who mentioned that the book lacked a bit of depth, and it definitely depicts graphic violence. The kindle book setting was generally very good with few typos; my only beef was that the usual white space between changes of time and/or setting have been omitted. This made for some startling and sometimes confusing transitions.

I enjoyed the dialect and folksy feel of the book. It's an interesting look at frontier life. I felt the "romance novel" portions of the book were a little heavy-handed, and Maggie, the protagonist, became more unbelievable as a character as the story moved along. Though I appreciate the author's intent, I think the epilogue could have been omitted.

All in all, a good "popcorn read," and an entertaining story.