The Singing River
by R.K. Ryals
Why I didn't finish:
What grabbed my interest in the blurb was the setting-- Pascagoula. That's not terribly far from here, and I was curious to see how the author (a native of Mississippi) would present the region. Also, there was mention of a legend ("the singing river") that I'd never really heard about.
Now, if I'd stayed with the book, I assume there would eventually have been more about the legend, but it was just taking too long getting there, and it became clear that the story was really more about family drama and "real life problems" than I'd expected or wanted. (Yes, you read that right. I'm a shallow person who reads for pleasure and doesn't like too much "real life" creeping in. What's your point?)
There were some nice local touches. Butter beans. Purple-hull peas. A glass of milk and cornbread. (With the cornbread in the glass with the milk. I've never eaten it, but I've heard about it. I think it was more common a couple of generations ago.) The incessant summertime noise of insects. The heat and humidity.
But there were also things I didn't really love-- such as all the talk about "blue bloods", meaning "old money". I don't think I've ever heard anyone seriously use that term, but these people bandied it about like it was in regular, daily use. Maybe it is, in Pascagoula. Not a couple of counties over, though-- or at least, not in my circle.
I could go into more reasons I wasn't compelled to finish, but what it comes down to is this: I don't think it's an awful book, but it's not for me.