Monday, June 25, 2007

The Same Sweet Girls by: Cassandra King

cover image from LibraryThing
“The Same Sweet Girls” is a group of women who graduated together from college in the deep South. Each summer they gather to crown one of them the queen for the next year. The queen is enthroned on a decorated commode with a robe of purple and gold and a scepter made from a baton with cotton bolls, sugar cubes and streamers erupting from the top. As the women gather they remember and add to the history of the SSGs.

But, their lives are not as simple as they appear on the surface.

Julia, the First Lady of Alabama has a checkered past and has been unable to love her husband because of a deep love her mother stomped on. She hides it with perfection and poise and distance. 

Corrine, the self-claimed weirdo, has the most destructive and damaged past. As a young woman she began seeing a therapist, a man who stole her life. Miles took over every part of her life and refused to let go - abusing her physically and psychologically.

Then there is Lanier, the self-destructive woman. Lanier had fled from her husband after a nasty affair. 

Byrd, the bible-thumping mother figure;

 Aster, the exotic, self-absorbed, husbandizing, dancer

Rosanelle, alumni coed-wannabe complete the group.

Corrine is often the story teller - mostly because it is a tale about the end of her life... We learn how Corrine pulls away from Miles and reunites with her son, Culley and her art - gourd art- the story of the SSGs and the way women hold one another together.

I really enjoyed this story. I think I liked Angry Housewives a bit better though. This sometimes got a bit campy with Southern ‘charm.’ But - it’s a great read!!

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