I was raised on the banks of the Chattahoochee River in mid-west Georgia on the Alabama line at the foothills of Appalachia. We spent many nights camping along those river banks and held up in my cousin’s cabin. Most of our days were spent water skiing, but the summer nights were often spent sitting around the campfire telling scary stories. From Meridian, Mississippi, Lori Crane is a prolific writer and she spins a good old fashioned southern yarn.
The Legend of Stuckey’s Bridge is southern folklore exactly the way southern folklore is meant to be told. The forward by author Pat Fitzhugh sets up the historical story perfectly. Lori Crane’s first chapter literally reels you into the beginning of a tale that will send shivers down your spine. I quickly turned the pages in anticipation of what would happen next.
Thomas is an evil villain, but not one that you can’t care for. Lori does a fine job giving us just enough history to feel some sense of empathy for this wicked man. In fact, you almost find yourself rooting for him despite his hideous ways. Happening in the Deep South during the turn of the 20th century, Lori gives us a sense of time and place, what the harshness of life was like for the poorest and the opulence of the well-off that they so envied.
This was a quick read. I read it in one night while sitting on the back porch with my ereader in the dark listening to an owl hoot. It was the best ambiance possible for such a heinous tale and reminded me of the camping trips of my youth when we sat around the fire trying to scare the pants off each other. I thoroughly enjoyed this frightening folktale and highly recommend it.
There is a sequel coming out in June that is set to begin in my home state and I can’t wait!
You can visit with Lori Crane here: a day in the life of patootie
This is a song inspired by Stuckey’s Bridge written and performed by Kris Carmichael