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My Old True Love

My Old True Love - Sheila Kay Adams My Old True Love by Shield Kay Adams popped up in my recommendations from Good reads and I picked it as a January sort of wild card and I am very glad I did.

This novel is set in the mountains of North Carolina and narrated with the wonderful voice of Arty Norton, mother to a large family living in the mid-late 1800s around the time of the Civil War. The story is centred on Arty's family, of hardships, love, life and the appreciation of the simple things in life like family, nature, changing seasons and how in times of need families look out for one another.

"I must say that there is a certain peace in knowing that nature will move things in the direction they've been going for generation after generation"

I loved so much about this book it brings you right back in time and makes you appreciate our ancestors. The story itself is loosely based on relatives of the authors and the characters are richly and beautifully written and so believable of their time. I loved the character of Arty who is the narrator throughout the story and she brings a wonderful charm and wit to the book which could have been a sad read otherwise. The story conveys a wonderful sense of family and a great appreciation of the simple things in life like the coming together of family and neighbours at the time when music and songs were the only form of entertainment and yet people talked, sang, danced and enjoyed life even though they struggled from day to day with large families and wars and weather.

My brother was just a runner of women and that is all there is to say about it, really. I will have to say here that I do not understand this, as I have caught many babies in my lifetime and all of the equipment looks pretty much the same to me" (just one of Arty's witty observations which really made me laugh)

Interwoven into the story are the ballads of ancestors who settled in the mountains and who's music and songs are remembered throughout the story.

This is not a novel about the Civil War but a novel that gives us a wonderful window into eighteen century life in the Appalachian mountains of North Carolina and how a family lived, loved in a time of civil war and how the war impacted on the lives of a people who were already struggling.

Really enjoyed this novel and spent a lot of time googling places mentioned in the book Made me want to pack my bags and take a trip to the Appalachian mountains. Maybe someday soon!