- Paperback: 204 pages
- Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (Feb. 2 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1456584863
- ISBN-13: 978-1456584863
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.2 x 22.9 cm
- Shipping Weight: 367 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
Familiar Shadows Paperback – Feb 2 2011
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About the Author
Bert Goolsby, a former Chief Deputy Attorney General of South Carolina and Judge of the South Carolina Court of Appeals, has authored three short-story collections, Five Stockings, Sweet Potato Biscuits, and Humanity, Darling, and published two novels, Her Own Law and Harpers' Joy, the latter of which South Carolina Lawyers Weekly also serialized. His short stories "A Presbyterian Cookbook" and "The Fan Dancer" appear in the anthologies On Grandma's Porch and More Sweet Tea, respectively. Marlo Thomas included his piece "Truck No. 15" in her work The Right Words at the Right Time, Volume 2. A Citadel graduate with a law degree from the University of South Carolina and an advanced law degree from the University of Virginia, he lives in Columbia, South Carolina with his wife Prue. They have one son, Philip Lane Goolsby, M.D., a family physician who resides in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
The year is 1945 and summer has just begun. Twelve-year-old Skeets McLendon lives with his Aunt Tweeve and Uncle Delaware on a small farm in a small Southern town. It's shaping up to be a typical summer with friends Will Sheffield, Earl "Dump" Tomlin, and Woodie Jerideau, doing the things that boys like to do--playing baseball, going to the movies, swimming in a pond, playing rubber-guns, and chasing each other around as cops and robbers, cowboys and Indians or Americans and Nazis. But before they can get into the routine, Aunt Tweeve takes custody of beautiful Lydia Powell, also age twelve. Lydia's presence will complicate their lives on many levels. Not only are Skeets and Will hopelessly in love with their new friend, but Aunt Tweeve needs to protect her young charge from a menacing evil. The ending was very unexpected and very poignant.
There is so much to enjoy about Goolsby's writing. I enjoyed his "homey" writing style and the way he transports the reader back to a small Southern town in 1945. He's got it all from the hot days to the sweet tea to the blueberry cobbler to Southern-style analogies and similes to the segregated drinking fountains. In describing Will, Goolsby writes "Success came to Will Sheffield as easily as failure came to a tenant farmer with a dead mule, a broken plow, a pregnant wife, and a past-due note at the bank." You also couldn't ask for a better set of characters. The indomitable Aunt Tweeve and Skeets were my favorites. But even supporting characters like Dump Tomlin were impressive. As their leader, he "served as our recreation director, central planner, and chief counsel. He decided things like when rubber-gun season began and ended, when to go barefooted, when to make hideouts or dig caves, what nicknames to pin on a playmate, who was to be on whose side in basketball, football, and baseball games, and what lies we were to tell our parents or, in my case, guardians, when the need arose, which was often." I can honestly say that I was sorry to see Familiar Shadows end.
Familiar Shadows is a story about growing from childhood into an adult. It's about falling in love for the first time. It's a story of doing what is right--even when the effort isn't easy. And it's a story about making sacrifices for the things that you love. Bert Goolsby had a successful career as a judge before he turned to writing after retiring from the bench. After reading this wonderful novel, I'm wondering if perhaps Goolsby should have chosen a writing career, first and foremost.