Today I’m excited to be taking part in the book tour for Have No Shame by Melissa Foster. Thank you to Fiction Addiction Book Tours for sending me an e-copy of the book.
“Alison Tillman has called Forrest Town, Arkansas home for the past eighteen years. Her mother’s Blue Bonnet meetings, her father toiling night and day on the family farm, and the division of life between the whites and the blacks are all Alison knows. The winter of 1967, just a few months before marrying her high school sweetheart, Alison finds the body of a black man floating in the river, and she begins to view her existence with new perspective. The oppression and hate of the south, the ugliness she once was able to avert her eyes from, now demands her attention.
When a secretive friendship with a young black man takes an unexpected romantic turn, Alison is forced to choose between her predetermined future, and the dangerous path that her heart yearns for.”
I was really intrigued by the blurb for this book but I had no idea just how much I would enjoy it. I was utterly gripped by the storyline, it was one of those books that had me thinking about it even when I wasn’t reading!
It began with Alison making a gruesome discovery, this was a powerful way to start a book in my opinion and it captured my interest immediately. Obviously Alison was deeply upset by what she found but it also made her think more about the town she was living in and the actions of its people – she started to realise that she didn’t agree with what was going on. It seemed to me that finding the body opened up the floodgates of curiosity for Alison and she began to question everything she had previously been taught about skin colour and her place in life. Venturing into forbidden territory was just the start of her rebellion…
It was clear from the start that Alison’s relationship with Jimmy Lee wasn’t healthy and I found myself willing her to be strong enough to make her own decisions. When Jackson came into her life he opened her eyes to a whole new kind of love but this also brought danger and at this point I could almost feel Alison’s confusion jumping off the page at me.
When Alison’s sister Maggie returned from New York she was full of new ideas about civil rights and it showed Alison just how behind their town was, this was a definite turning point because it meant that Alison was able to imagine the world in a very different way. Maggie was a great character, she brought out the good side of her sister and I thoroughly enjoyed their moments together. Another great character was Alison’s mum who was just full of surprises! I loved seeing how their bond became stronger as they got to know each other properly.
It got rather tense towards the end, particularly during the boycott and when secrets were finally revealed – it was nail-biting stuff! There were also a few tender moments that brought tears to my eyes so it’s certainly a book that covers a range of emotions.
I loved the style of writing, I could imagine hearing the southern accents in my head (just to let you know, I don’t usually hear voices in my head unless I’m reading :)) and this meant I was easily able to immerse myself in the story. The subject was difficult but fascinating and I felt that the author captured the emotions of everyone involved perfectly.
This was a compelling tale of forbidden love and civil rights – a must read!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Melissa Foster is the award-winning author of four International bestselling novels. Her books have been recommended by USA Today’s book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the Women’s Nest, a social and support community for women, the World Literary Café. When she’s not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on Fostering Success. Melissa has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.
Melissa hosts an annual Aspiring Authors contest for children and has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Melissa lives in Maryland with her family.
To find out more about Melissa Foster click on the following links:
You also have the chance to win a paperback copy of Have No Shame by clicking on the Rafflecopter link below and following the instructions: