Eat, Drink and Be from Mississippi: A Novel
Little, Brown & Company (2009)
Reviewed by Danelle Drake for Reader Views (2/09)
Southern literature, really good southern literature, is one of my favorite things. I like nothing better than to snuggle down in a hammock and read by the campfire. That alone is one of the best forms of therapy ever. “Eat, Drink and Be from Mississippi” is a book that you will read over and over. The unorthodox relationship triangle between Truely Noonan, his older sister Courtney, and young Arnold Carter is something I have never seen before. The chemistry between the three makes this book great.
Growing up in Hinds County, Mississippi, Courtney always knew she wanted to get away. Truely, her younger brother supported her but couldn’t see why anyone would want to leave the boundaries of Mississippi. Truely is more of a homebody like his parents. He had the perfect girlfriend and would be content to spend his entire life just where he was. He didn’t see why she wanted to leave, that is, until he went for a visit. After that visit he wanted nothing but to follow the path she had taken. With the reluctant support of his parents Truely moves to California. He and his sister lead very different lives with infrequent visits. Each has reached what appears to be great success when their lives intermingle with the entrance of Arnold Carter. This young African-American brought their idyllic lives to a screeching halt.
Nancy Kincade has created a great story that reiterates the fact that money isn’t everything, family (regardless of the dynamics), faith, and self-love are. You will fall in love with the characters and wish the book would not end. “Eat, Drink and Be from Mississippi” lets you know that really, at the end of the day, the most important thing is just to “Be.”