Life can be beautiful, but it takes a little work…“The problem with cutting your own hair is that once you start, you just keep cutting, trying to fix it, and the truth is, some things can never be fixed. The day of my daddy’s funeral, I cut my bangs until they were the length of those little paintbrushes that come with dime-store watercolor sets. I was nine years old. People asked me why I did it, but I was too young then to know I was changing my hair because I wanted to change my life.”
In 1983, on her nineteenth birthday, Zora Adams finally says goodbye to her alcoholic mother and their tiny town in the mountains of South Carolina. Living with a woman who dresses like Judy Garland and brings home a different man each night is not a pretty existence, and Zora is ready for life to be beautiful.With the help of a beloved teacher, she moves to a coastal town and enrolls in the Davenport School of Beauty. Under the tutelage of Mrs. Cathcart, she learns the art of fixing hair, and becomes fast friends with the lively Sara Jane Farquhar, a natural hair stylist. She also falls hard for handsome young widower Winston Sawyer, who is drowning his grief in bourbon. She couldn’t save Mama, but maybe she can save him.
As Zora practices finger waves, updos, and spit curls, she also comes to learn that few things are permanent in this life—except real love, lasting friendship, and, ultimately… forgiveness.
*I received a this book from the author for a blog tour in exchange for my honest opinion. I was in way compensated for this review.*
The Wisdom of Hair Links:
About the Author:
I was born in Augusta, Georgia, but raised in South Carolina in a home with two girly sisters and great parents. So when you read my stuff if there is ever some deranged mama or daddy terrorizing the protagonist, I want to make it clear, it’s not them.
I had a happy, boring childhood, which sucks if you’re a writer because you have to create your own crazy. PLUS after you’re published and you’re being interviewed, for some reason, it’s very appealing that the author actually lived in Crazy Town or somewhere in the general vicinity.
What I did have going for me was two things. One, my grandfather, Bryan Standridge, was an amazing storyteller. He held court under an old mimosa tree on the side of his yard, and people used to come by in droves just to hear him tell stories. He told tales about growing up in rural Georgia and shared his unique take on the world. As a child, I was enthralled, but when I started to write, really write, I realized what a master teacher of pacing and sensory detail he was.
The other major influence on my writing is my ADHDness. Of course when I was a kid, nobody knew what that was. Compared to my older sisters, I knew something was “wrong” with me, so I learned to multitask like crazy and excel at things I did well to make up for things I couldn’t do like math and sitting still.
Today, I’m an empty nester of two kids with a husband, three dogs, and 126 rose bushes. I write stories about strong southern women because that’s what I know. I’m an accomplished public speaker, which basically means I’m good at talking.
If this doesn’t tell you what you want to know, check out my blog for a few laughs and some good stuff on writing, gardening, food, and, of course, hair.
Wisdom of Hair is very much a coming of age story. It also has a Steel Magnolias feel to it, which I love!
Zora is a character you either love, or hate. I have a feeling for her that’s somewhere in between. When she decides it’s time to liver her life away from her mother, she is so strong. Zora tries so hard not to become her mother, but there are times it seems she’s headed down that same path. Her friend Sara Jane is pretty awesome. She’s the friend all girls wish they had. She doesn’t judge Zora for her decisions, and runs to her side anytime she needs the help.
The pacing is slow, but in a good way. It’s a lazy, summer day read. Zora doesn’t always make the right decisions, but she’s done great in deciding who to place her trust in. It’s easy for her to make friends, and the ones she has will do anything for her. Emotions run high at times. There are times you are laughing your butt off, and times that you want to curl into a ball and cry.
This is a very realistic storyline. Although it takes place in 1983, the same events still happen everywhere today. You just hope that those in this situation find a great outcome. I definitely recommend this book. Even if you want to tell Zora how dumb she’s being, you’ll still empathize with her. She does what she thinks is right at the time, and deals with whatever the consequences may be.
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