By Wilton Mason
This charming, humorous book is a refreshing portrayal of a world that is fast disappearing: the American Mid-South before and during the Depression. The narration rings true, especially when the author looks at himself in a strong light and lets his own faults be seen. The world Wilton Mason shows us is of the middle class, where deprivation means having only two kinds of meat on the table, only one car under the porte cochère, and only copies of big-city dresses made on Mama's machine.
At the other end of the spectrum is "The Best Wife in Oconee County", a hapless orphan girl, forced into marriage to a man who rules her with an iron fist and uses the Depression to justify his miserly ways. You'll find yourself mesmerized by the characters of Nubbin Ridge: the five sisters, their husbands and children, and the inhabitants of the town. You'll go with Aunt Belle to watch Gloria Swanson film a movie, live with Aunt lone as she entertains the regular summer visitors from N.Y.C..
You'll literally taste Aunt Ode's strawberries, Aunt Allie's navy beans in tomato sauce, and Aunt lone's Lady Baltimore Cake. You'll partake in wine-tastings, Boy Scout meetings, front porch sittings, and gossip. In short, you'll laugh, cry, and be thoroughly entertained to the last page.
Enjoyed by A.J. Mayhew
(M-PACT, The official Newsletter of Triad Area Mensa,
April 2002, volume XXIII, Issue IV, p. 5.)
Copyright © Jean-Michel Margot