Ruby by Cynthia Bond
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
(Deep Breath) Where to begin??!?? This is one of the best yet one of the most horrific novels I've ever read. If it were not for the brilliant poetic writing of the author, I am not sure I would have been able to get passed all the abuse/rape/horrific acts in this book. It is full of such tragedy and horror that it should be noted as a warning when diving in, however; it's a story that screams to be read and heard if you can give it a chance to get through the tough scenes.
I read this as a buddy read with a friend without ever knowing what it was about, and if I had - I probably would have said no - so thank you Annette.
If you can get through all the horrific scenes in this book you are rewarded with such fabulous story telling, wonderful character development, and an imagery that reminds me of the best poetry. This is truly an amazing story of Survival and Love, not just by Ruby and Ephram but the town and each of the towns people. This novel has a way of unraveling everything you thought about being "crazy", by reading this novel you can imagine how someone could be driven to such madness and how different people cope with their tragedies.
This is a bit of a spoiler but I don't think that it's a surprise, because a story of such haunting horrors needs this... The ending of this book was such a pleasure to unveil, the happiest ending you could expect from such a novel, simple..... Hope. Such a small word, simple idea - yet so hard for some to maintain through their lives and experiences.
Some of my favorite quotes:
"You know how men do. Nasty ring it's bell and they come running like it's suppertime in hell. Devil got him a firm foothold in Liberty. I know. I seen it firsthand what conjure can do. [...] I'm on a firstname basis with the Devil, so I know how his mind be working, always looking out for another sinner to season his brew." ~ Celia
"God love simple, but so do the Devil. Cuz simple ain't got the kind of mind to withstand temptation" ~ Celia
"Then Ruby searched the dark of her own body and found a hiding place thick in the branches of the chinaberry. It held her safe, the leaves full, always green, the sky all stars and crickets. There were sounds above her, horrible sounds, so she pulled herself closer and prayed to the tree. The tree answered, and she saw her hand turned to bark, broken mahogany ridges, her fingers tiny living twigs, with golden beads dangling from them. Her torso melted into the trunk and her toes lay safe underground. The sky shook over her head but Ruby was now the tree. She stood there safe and waited for the storm to pass."
"I'm most interested in the woman you have yet to be." ~ Ephram
"If you brave enough to live it, the least I can do is listen." ~ Ephram
I rated this book 11/10 (A+) Phenomenal! This one is going on my keeper shelf, it's definitely a favorite.
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