Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove
Because people know that I loooove to read, I am often the recipient of books that “you absolutely have to read.” Today’s post is about the latest book I’ve been given, and it does, in fact, fall into that category.
When I was first loaned the book South of Broad by Pat Conroy, I didn’t know what to expect. I had never read anything by the author, so it was a real shot in the dark for me. At the beginning of the book, I was drawn in by its charm, very likeable main character named Leo King, and the easiness that comes with Conroy’s writing style.
Here’s a brief synopsis: We meet Leo King and he introduces us to his lovely town of Charleston. He is a paper delivery boy whose life is changed during one summer when he meets the people he will remain friends with for the rest of his life. All of his friends are plagued by certain obstacles in their own lives, such as racial identity, family issues, and discovering who they are.
The book travels in between Leo’s past as a child with his friends and the present, during which he is a leading columnist for the Charleston newspaper he once delivered on the foot of many people’s doorsteps. One of his friends, Trevor, has gone missing in the present and they all travel out to San Fransisco to find him and save him — the awful truth is that he is dying of AIDS.
In their traveling, the friends discover new emotions and relationships with each other. However, the whole time they are there, they are being stalked by Trevor and his sister Sheba’s father, who intends to kill them. The story weaves in and out between San Fransisco, Charleston, past and present from there.
This book was truly great; a rare gem amongst fiction books. It makes you become incredibly engrossed in it’s story. So engrossed, probably, that you will put other things off just to lock yourself in a nice comfy reading place to finish it. But hey, that doesn’t sound like such a bad idea to me!