Genre: Literary Fiction/Women's Fiction
“Dori Bardwell's father was the white Southern author of THE novel about slavery, a man who settled his large family up north in a replica of a plantation house and never spoke of his past. A tragic accident pulled Dori from college to care for her only remaining brother, but now the money is running out, her ex-boyfriend appears intent on revenge, a media baron has designs on her father's last, unfinished manuscript, and her own thoughtless blackface joke is about to go viral and turn her life upside down.
With a new, media-savvy African American friend, Dori embarks on a voyage into her family's secret history that might just lead her right back to where she started.”
“Born and raised in Florida, Sandra Hutchison survived a transplant to a small, snowy New England town during high school and eventually stopped sulking about it, though it's possible she's still working it out in her fiction. She currently lives in Troy, New York, where she teaches writing at Hudson Valley Community College. “
Bardwell's Folly is hard to nail down. Is it literary fiction or women's fiction? Is it humorous and satirical or serious? Should a reader come away being entertained by the story as told, or is there some hidden meaning or point to be gleaned by looking a little deeper?
The answers to all of these questions are obviously a big resounding yes. Or no. Whatever you want the answer to be to any of those questions including “all of the above,” it fits the bill. I was amused by Dori, but still took what was happening to her throughout the book seriously enough to care. I think there are lessons or at least points to consider about family and literary celebrity, but more than enough to be entertaining if you want to avoid the deep thoughts. There should be something here for anyone who wants a good read, regardless of how you define that.
Some adult language.
No significant issues.
Rating: ***** Five Stars
Reviewed by: BigAl
Approximate word count: 100-105,000 words