When 27 year old Mormon Ann Bixby returns to the small town of her childhood after the death of her father, she has no idea that she is about to become a mother-to a 180 pound abandoned Great Dane-and a lifeline to a reclusive and bitter young man.
The author wishes to include a short disclaimer-warning-caution-whatever you might call it-here at the beginning. I was raised in the area where this book is set. I know what the people sound like who live there. I spent many years listening to it, and I sound that way myself. Regional dialects include all kinds of things. It isn’t just about how a word is pronounced, but also what word will be used, and the whole grammatical structure of a sentence will come into play.
Many others have said it far better than I will here-but I love anything written in dialect. I want to hear the people, I want to know what they sound like, and I must assume everyone is like me because that's the way I write. If you are ever talking to me face-to-face and see me gazing at you with a sappy look, then you can bet it’s because I just love how you sound. If I ever put you into a book, I will do my best to re-create that sound.
So, I will warn you now: if bad grammar grates on your nerves, if the appearance of written words slurred together bothers you a whole lot, if you believe that a person who habitually speaks with improper grammar will not have the sufficient intelligence to quote Keats or Shakespeare, then this is not the book for you. All of my characters use “bad” grammar some of the time, some of them use it most of the time, and many of the people from the area in question (Western New York) will join with those who dislike bad grammar. After all, lots of them don’t speak that way. But most of my characters do, and it is not unusual at all in that area of the country.
Mark Twain is the expert on this subject, and literary critic Lionel Twilling, speaking of Twain, summed it up best: “He is the master of the style that escapes the fixity of the printed page, that sounds in our ears with the immediacy of the heard voice, the very voice of unpretentious truth.”
About Jane McBride
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Published November 26, 2013
Religion & Spirituality, Crafts, Hobbies & Home, Romance, Literature & Fiction.