The author on Moon City Here s my review of Blue Sabine originally published in
Southwest Historical UarterlyIn This Historical uarterlyIn this beautifully wondrously told novel by Gerald Duff one family s personal history merges with the arger currents of Texas and American history creating a twisting turning narrative that is as aesthetically satisfying as it is historically resonantBlue Sabine follows several generations of the Holt family from their arrival to the Sabine borderlands in 1867 until the present day The story is told by a succession of voices most often the women of the Holt clan The novel s structure presents the testimonies *of these family members at six specific points in time 1867 1912 1941 *these family members at six specific points in time 1867 1912 1941 1990 2003 The ultimate effect is to illuminate the social history of this corner of Texas from a time when scattered remnants of the Native American population still wandered the forests until today when you can feel that bite of petroleum and chemicals in the air In 1912 we get a clear Material Alchemy look at the complex nuanced nature of race relations through the eyes of one of the Holt sisters Maude who is on her way to assist an African American woman Joleen whose husband is being hunted by aynch mob Maude recalls how she met Joleen as a child at a secret spring where the two shared the water a simple act of friendship that takes on symbolic importance in a Falling For A Boss land ruled by Jim Crow When Maude told her mother how sheoved Joleeen she was met with a sharp rebuke You do not Basics of successful agriculture in the tropics love Joleen You cannotove a colored girl from the uarters And you may never say that again you must never say that again to me or to anyone else particularly 103 And yet the memory of that early bond persists and The West in Texas and in her own way and her own time In its flow and its setting of boundaries the Sabine River comes to reflect what remains and what changes in the way the Holt women see their world and themselves The river forever flows and it pulls at all it touches one of the characters says yet it never eaves and it never stays Two twenty first century descendants give the narrative its overall shape and connection Clement an award winning mo. Ow Maude is determined to rescue Joleen s husband though she is
Armed With Nothing Than with nothing than horse drawn wagon oaded down with freshly cut flowers Duff handles the scene with incredible delicacy and suspense signifying him as a major iterary talentBy 1941 Maude is on her deathbed but the stories continue to weave the
together as her is on the scene We hear about the death of Maude s son Richard who survived the Great War in Europe only to die working for a ogging company in the Piney Woods And then there s her brother Lewis who at news of *the oil boom at Sour Lake eft home so fast he had to *oil boom at Sour Lake eft home so fast he had to his goods in a cut down cotton sack shouting from the road at me that the next time I saw my brother he d be riding in a shiny automobile belonging to nobody but him 149 Lewis did get his new car but he also became blinded as a result of an unfortunate encounter at a whorehouse in Beaumont As this section ends the family hears the words Pearl Harbor spoken on their radioDuff makes clear in this book that the Sabine bottomlands is a place where kinship ties run deep and the power of story is paramount It is in the telling of tales the ability to use the right words that the people of the Holt clan and perhaps all Texans secure their identity and their relationships with one another As Maude remarks about her sister s attempt to tell a particular story she is fitting all that into a pattern to serve her purpose but I will not correct or contradict what she needs to believe is true in her story She must have that as she wants it and what business of it is mine to deny my sister the shaping of the world which will feed her the nourishment she craves I grant her that. Vie director and his cousin Kay Phuong a woman of Vietnamese and Holt BWWM (Interracial Romance BWWM African American Multicultural Romance) *1 (Interracial Romance BWWM African American Multicultural Romance) *1: Billionaires Secret Baby (BWWM Secret Baby Romance Contemporary Romance) lineage who has made herself into a fashion model and actress They have returned to the Valley of the Sabine where the Holts haveived for almost two hundred years to hear once the old stories and to confirm their own part in the saga They seek to understand and to play their role in the continuing telling and retelling of the narratives that bind them to their family and to the pa. .Family Together As Her
REVIEW ¼ THEYUPPYPUPPY.CO.UK Ò Gerald Duff.
By Gerald Duffmoon city press 315 pgs978 0 913785 34 8Rating 4Gerald Duff has mad skills Blue Sabine is yrical it reads ike poetry but in a good way This is the story of the Holt family as they relocate from Louisiana to Texas after the Civil War and unto the present day told by the voices of its women who have always been the strength of Texas Everybody knows that rightDon t come to Blue Sabine for plot or climax or denouement or any of those usual things though you l find plenty of protagonists and antagonists sometimes the same person is both Come for the characters
the stories they Each character is a melody joined by the chorus of stories they tell about themselves and each other Our stories are how we know who we are the first essons we Tyral (Mated to the Alien, learn about family and how to behave or not in the big wide worldIf you are a Texan you will recognize this family because it is yours It is certainly *mine I have an Aunt Abigail whoikes to hold forth *I have an Aunt Abigail who Knocked Up by a Thug likes to hold forth the authority on all things appropriate and inappropriate I have a Great Grandfather Amos Holt who has turned to God and become a preacher mostly because he is overwhelmed by the women surrounding him and finds God comprehensible I have a Cousin you must capitalize cousin Nola Mae whose faith resides in her beauty and style and worth on the man market a time honored tradition among southern women and whose children have sometimes taken a backseat to her personal ambitions I wouldike to note that we don t have anyone who was blinded by a pimp for insulting his hooker Not that I am aware of Not yet MeanwhileAnd The Stories They
IT IS MY PERSONAL AMBITION TOis my personal ambition to African or American?: Black Identity and Political Activism in New York City, 1784-1861 like GrandMaude and youl just have to read Blue Sabine to know what I meanFor on. Blue Sabine is a story of five generations of women in the same family told in their voices along with those of some men of Holt blood It is set along the Sabine River which divides the state of Texas from Louisiana and the Deep South From 1867 when the Holts first came to Texas to the present the novel chronicles the emotional ives of grandmothers mothers daughters and nieces all bound by kinship and history Each comes to terms with being a woman in. ,