Once Upon A Book Club: The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson

Before I launch into this, let me thank Valerie at Sourcebooks for sending me book related swag, book club guides, and immeasurable help in getting this out there to book clubs and my customers. Thank you to Mark for giving me an advance copy. This book is available at your local bookstore, and is put out by local publisher Sourcebooks. Shout out to my former bookstore homie Jessie!

Anyway, when the Bandits rolled in this time, there were only 2. Summertime and nicer weather mean vacations for most of the store clientele, so I wasn’t surprised. One of the book club really did not like the book; the other lady liked it ok but she had some issues with it. I picked this book because I was trying to stick to paperback, I knew ZERO about the blue people of Kentucky, and it’s about BOOKS. I thought we might have a winner. Well, let me start by saying that I really did enjoy the book. It took a while to wade through Bluet’s (sticking with the nickname, because the real name of the character was not an enviable one) Kentucky dialect, but once I did, it was smooth sailing.

Bluet is one of the last Blue People in Kentucky. She’s also The Book Woman, working with the Pack Horse Library Project of rural Kentucky, driving along lonely and often dangerous roads, to take books to the impoverished people of East Kentucky. You would hope that the books would transcend madness, but in the cases of some, it just fuels the fires. She finds out the hard way when her Dad marries her off to the town clergy, only to have it end badly. Bluet becomes a widow and catches the eye of the local well-to-do Jackson, who sticks up for her and tries to be a friend. Friends are hard to find for Bluet, because the tinge of blue in her skin guarantees scorn and racism from her fellow librarians, townspeople, and even potential husbands. It seems like these idiots never let up, so I spent a lot of the book swearing at these hatemongers. I loved Bluet’s spirit throughout the book, and her determination to pass the love of reading and books onto the less fortunate who enjoyed them as she did. I also, oddly enough, got grew to love her donkey. I know. It sounds as ridiculous as it is. The romance between Jackson and Bluet is no surprise; the reader can see it coming pretty clearly. There were missed opportunities for plot; as one of the bandits pointed out, Bluet’s father and the troubled history of the mining and those in charge. Speaking of issues like pay, etc? Perfect chance for the author to run with it. No dice. I felt the ending with Jackson and Bluet kind of jumped around, in a weird way. How did all of those townsfolk know about what was happening? And after it’s “resolved”, is it really resolved? It felt like something was off with the ending. That was my only real beef. Otherwise, I really enjoyed it.

~ by generationgbooks on June 3, 2019.

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