Liar's Bench

Liar's Bench

Paperback - 2015
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"In 1972, on Mudas Summers' seventeenth birthday, her beloved Mama, Ella, is found hanging from the rafters of their home. Most people in Peckinpaw, Kentucky, assume that Ella's no-good husband did the deed. Others think Ella grew tired of his abuse and did it herself. Muddy is determined to find out for sure either way, especially once she finds strange papers hidden amongst her mama's possessions. But Peckinpaw keeps its secrets buried deep. Muddy's almost-more-than-friend, Bobby Marshall, knows that better than most. Though he passes for white, one of his ancestors was Frannie Crow, a slave hanged a century ago on nearby Hark Hill Plantation. Adorning the town square is a seat built from Frannie's gallows. A tribute, a relic--and a caution--it's known as Liar's Bench. Now, the answers Muddy seeks soon lead back to Hark Hill, to hatred and corruption that have echoed through the years--and lies she must be brave enough to confront at last. Kim Michele Richardson's lush, beautifully written debut is set against a Southern backdrop passing uneasily from bigotry and brutality to hope. With its compelling mystery and complex yet relatable heroine, Liar's Bench is a story of first love, raw courage, and truths that won't be denied"--Front flap.
Publisher: New York, NY : Kensington Books, [2015]
Edition: First Kensington trade paperback edition.
ISBN: 9781617737336
Characteristics: 261 pages ; 21 cm


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Aug 06, 2020

Interesting look at 1970s racial conditions in Kentucky. As a total northerner it depicted a world I'd never seen. In light of the marches and protests happening across the country this summer, this is probably truer than I would like it to be. Story moves slowly so I could put it down and get back to it later. I wanted to see how it ended so I did finish the book .

Apr 06, 2016

This feels like an under-edited first novel. I finished it because I was interested in finding out how it ended but getting there was painful. I was also uncomfortable with the massive amount of racism and racial slurs in the book, which I think were intended to be period-typical (it's set in 1970s Kentucky) but ended up feeling stereotypical and shoehorned-in.


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