Wednesday, November 16, 2016

All the Pretty Things - a book review

Edie Wadsworth, author of All the Pretty Things, writes a heartfelt memoir about growing up in Appalachia. The daughter of a broken family, Ms. Wadsworth candidly shares her story of heartbreak and hope. 

The story begins as Edie allows us to enter into her childhood growing up in the poorest part of the Tennessee foothills. As a young girl, Edie learns quickly that life is full of disappointments and heartache. Not only does she struggle with having her physical needs met, she also struggles with having her emotional needs met. Edie lives with her father in a dilapidated trailer park. Her father, a heavy drinker, often neglects the needs of Edie and her sister. Although Edie's father is often drunk, he tries to make light of the situation finding ways to feed Edie with laughter. But the laughter and silliness don't do the trick. Edie needs more. 

When their trailer home burns down, Edie and her family move in with Edie's grandmother. The extended family are as poor as Edie and her father but together, they pool resources and manage to eek out a living. Edie is constantly searching for the love she so desperately needs and seeks it from not only her father but also her estranged mother. Neither of her parents are able to give Edie what she needs but she clings to hope. 

As the story progresses, we see Edie drawing us more deeply into her story of vulnerability. The deep wounds created by unmet needs turn Edie from relying on her Earthly father to looking toward her Heavenly Father. 


I found this book challenging to read as I reached the middle section. I grew tired of reading the same type scenarios without much action or story line. The author writes well and this is an actual memoir so perhaps I was expecting too much. In any event, I think those who enjoy reading about true life stories in poverty stricken areas of the Appalachians might find this book enjoyable. 

I would like to thank Tyndale House Publishers for providing me with a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.  

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