Thursday, June 16, 2011

A Song for My Mother by Kat Martin

In 2009, Kat Martin introduced readers to the small town of Dreyerville, Michigan in her book, The Christmas Clock. Dreyerville is based on Ionia, Michigan, a town Martin describes as a charming nineteenth century village that "Represents old-fashioned values, the days when honesty, courage, loyalty and integrity were more valuable than they seem to be today." In her latest book, A Song for My Mother, she takes readers back to that town. You don't have to have read the previous book. The story and the characters all stand alone. But, their lives and feelings are rooted in small-town values.

Marly Hanson hasn't been home in twelve years, since the day she fled the life she knew, marrying to escape. Now, the divorced mother reluctantly returns. Her ten-year-old daughter, Katie, wants to meet the grandmother she never met. And, it's hard for Marly to deny that to the daughter who just went through radiation and chemotherapy for brain cancer. But, just because she's giving Katie the chance to know her grandmother, Winnie Maddox, that doesn't mean Marly has to enjoy her visit or spend time with her mother. Marly never forgave her mother for staying with her abusive father, and doesn't understand why her mother chose him over her only daughter.

It's too bad Marly doesn't want to stay in Dreyerville. Katie instantly loves her grandmother, and even finds a neighbor boy, Ham Bennett, who accepts her in her hairless state, and wants to be friends. And, Ham's father, Reed, the local sheriff, accepts Katie, and finds Marly attractive. But, Marly's anger and pain may prove too much of an obstacle to overcome.


A Song for My Mother is a short book, just 165 pages. But, Martin manages to pack the book with emotion. It's a story of relationships, and a story of strong women who have to make choices in their lives. Martin has mastered the art of creating well-drawn characters, people the reader cares for. This book is no exception. It's a story of a small community that pulls together when people are in need,  a story of people who recognize the tug of home, and honesty, and love. Some of Martin's characters, including Marly and her mother, have tough times in life, and everyone chooses different ways to make it through. People try to do their best to make it through the tough times. But, sometimes, others really don't understand people's actions, and why they make their choices. Martin doesn't hit her readers over the head with her message, but A Song for My Mother makes it clear.

Kat Martin's website is www.katmartin.com

A Song for My Mother by Kat Martin. Vanguard Press. ©2011. ISBN 9781593156565 (paperback), 165p.

*****
FTC Full Disclosure - The publicist sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.

7 comments:

Karen B said...

I just read this the other day and loved it. Short, sweet and very predictable but it left me satisfied and with a smile on my face. Now to read The Christmas Clock which I just found tucked away on one of my book shelves!

Lesa said...

Perfect summary of this book, Karen, "Short, sweet and very predicatable." But, it made you feel good at the end, didn't it?

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

Sounds like a good summer read. And I love books set in small towns...

Lesa said...

It's an afternoon read, Elizabeth. Won't take you long. Dreyerville is a great small town.

Kris said...

I didn't realized the author had a new book out, thanks for the nudge! I enjoyed The Christmas Clock so I'm going to look for this one.

Lesa said...

And, I'm packing it up to send to my mother, Kris. You'll enjoy this one, too.

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