Wednesday, July 01, 2009
Patti Lacy's What the Bayou Saw ~ Reviewed
What the Bayou Saw
By Patti Lacy
Published by Kregel Publications
The past can't stay buried forever Rising author Patti Lacy's second novel exposes the life of Sally, set amid the shadows of prejudice in Louisiana. Since leaving her home in the South, Sally Stevens has held the secrets of her past at bay, smothering them in a sunny disposition and sugar-coated lies. No one, not even her husband, has heard the truth about her childhood. But when one of her students is violently raped, Sally's memories quickly bubble to the surface unbidden, like a dead body in a bayou. As Sally's story comes to light, the lies she's told begin to catch up with her. And as her web of deceit unravels, she resolves to face the truth at last, whatever the consequences.
Patti Lacy writes with abandon--exuberant prose with a magnetism aimed straight at the reader. Her second novel, What The Bayou Saw, is a compelling, page-turning read that recalls a tumultuous past, this time for Sally Stevens, a college professor. When one of her students, a gifted African-American girl, is brutally beaten, old memories that Sally has kept hidden for thirty years are stirred. As the layers are peeled back, Sally discovers not only the misdeeds of others, but also a blackness in her own soul that stemmed from an incident with her childhood friend, Ella.
Deeply honest, the prose sometimes stings with gritty reality about the prejudices of the South--from the swamps of Sally's childhood to Katrina-ravaged New Orleans. Ultimately, it's a story of faith, the sometimes twisty road to forgiveness, and God's abundant grace. I think you'll be delighted with the detours in the scenery, as Sally and Ella wrap themselves around your heart.
Patti Lacy is a gifted storyteller, with a knack for drawing rich settings that linger long after the last page.
Reviewed by Carla Stewart