Miss Hildreth Wore Brown, by Olivia DeBelle Byrd

Filed in Gather Books Essential by on August 4, 2012 0 Comments


From start to finish this set of wonderfully Southern, sweetly humorous, bitingly perceptive essays had me laughing out loud, sipping coffee with a contented smile, and longing to sit on the deck and enjoy the sunshine.

Beginning with a Southern lady’s dismay while viewing a friend in her casket— “Brown is not her color”—and ending with a tale of Southerners in New York, doomed to forget Northern women don’t like to be called Ma’am, these essays range from the joys of rearing children to the search for Robert Redford, via husbands, weddings, funerals, coffee-shops and more. But there’s no feeling of skipping between topics in this eclectic mix. Each tale feels naturally told and perceptively placed, and even Miss Hildreth’s brown can’t help but recur occasionally. The voice is perfect. The tone is so genuine I feel like I’ve sat listening to the author while sipping—well, cold coffee probably in my case, at a wonderful coffee shop where she’ll exclaim in dismay about the price and the calories. “At this rate, the younger generation is going to be, like, fat and broke. Who knew indeed!” Then a twelve-year-old policeman will stop us in our car as we drive home…

I’m not a great reader of essays but I love this collection. These anecdotes of a Southern Belle just beg to be read, reread and read out loud to friends—highly recommended.


Disclosure: I won a copy of this book from a blog and I’m delighted to thank the author by posting my honest review.

About the Author ()

English American, Catholic Protestant, mathematician writer... author of Divide by Zero (Stonegarden.net Publishing 2012), Five-Minute Bible Story Series (Cape Arago Press), spiritual speculative novellas (Gypsy Shadow Publishing), Inspired by Faith and

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