By Daniel Woodrell
Review by Pam Blittersdorf
Author Daniel Woodrell creates a memorable heroine in 16 year old Ree Dolly. Ree desparately wants to escape the poverty of her Ozark community and enlist in the Army (“where you got to travel with a gun and they make everybody help keep things clean”), but she feels duty-bound to her family. Her meth-cooking dad has posted the family home as collateral, then jumped bail. To save her younger brothers and mentally ill mother, Ree has to ask some tough questions about her father’s fate. The folks with the answers to those questions don’t take kindly to being asked. The language of the novel is gritty, genuine and suspenseful. Ree’s grim humor and determination are certain to catch you up in her story.
The film adaptation premiered in 2010. Jennifer Lawrence’s star-making performance as Ree earned her an Academy Award nomination. Read this emotionally charged book and then borrow the film at the library!
This review was originally part of the “Novel Adventures” blog.
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About the reviewer: Former Head of Reference at TPL, Pam now enjoys semi-retirement in Massachusetts.