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A Land More Kind Than Home Hardcover – 29 Mar 2012

4.1 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday (29 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857520806
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857520807
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,557,513 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

"I think this could be the beginning of a long, fruitful career" (Ernest J. Gaines, author of "A Lesson Before Dying" and "The Autobiography of Jane Pittman")

"One of the most powerful novels I have ever read" (Fred Chappell, author of "I Am One of You Forever" and "Brighten the Corner Where You Are")

"Electrifying debut" (Financial Times)

"Cash's debut novel (A Land More Kind Than Home) is a chilling descent into the world of religious frenzy in small town North Carolina. The languid atmosphere seduces, and Cash's fine first effort pulls the reader into a shadowy, tormented world where wolves prowl in the guise of sheep" (Publishers' Weekly)

"Mesmerizing first novel... intensely felt and beautifully told" (The New York Times)

Book Description

The winner of the CWA John Creasey Award for Best First Novel 2012 - a stunning piece of southern crime noir

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is a beautifully evocative book. In the reading I found myself totally entranced by the character's telling. The author, a native of North Carolina, has ably managed to convey the idiom of this region. Comparison with "To Kill A Mockingbird" is a little obvious, but has merit. Both stories tell a tale, in this case largely, rather than completely, from the viewpoint of a child, both deal with violent injustice. I loved the way that flashbacks and memories blend with and weave their way throughout the main narrative. By the end you can understand and fully empathise with the pain and regret felt by many of the characters. There is even apparent redemption for one character, ironically not through the so-called Christian church featured, or at least not in the way you would expect.
I loved this book. I must however criticise the publisher's blurb (and various reviewers here). Jess doesn't witness his brother's death. He just doesn't, and to make such a clear, incorrect statement on the back of the book is silly. In fact if the blurb had stated what actually happened; Jess witnessed a scene and reacted in a way that led to his brother's death, I think even more readers would be drawn to this wonderful book... In my humble opinion...
I look forward to more from Mr Cash with eagerness.
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By Lovely Treez TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 29 Mar. 2012
Format: Hardcover
Born in North Carolina, raised in an evangelical church, Wiley Cash draws on his own personal experiences to produce this impressive debut novel.

One Sunday, in the oppressive Summer heat, the congregation of River Road Church take their religious fervour one step too far with devastating consequences. This compelling story, set in Madison County in 1986, is narrated from the perspectives of three different characters - Jess Hall, nine year old brother to Christopher "Stump" whose autism hinders any verbal communication, Clem Barefield, Sheriff of Madison County for 25 years yet still considered an outsider and finally, Adelaide Lyle, elderly spinster who leads the Sunday School yet remains wary of the Pastor, Carson Chambliss.

Chambliss is a very shady character, one of those larger than life, mesmerizing preachers who rules his ingenuous congregation with a rod of iron as well as traumatising them with snakes, poison and fire - blind faith indeed... This may be the 80s but this could be the land that time forgot. There's a great sense of place as the narrative moves from present to past and back again, evoking the seasons and landscape of this timeless setting. The author also seems very much in tune with his characters, ordinary, down to earth folk who try to get by the best they can - with perhaps one glaring exception.

If you enjoy well told stories with that languid, laconic vibe you find in the best Southern fiction, you will relish this gripping, poignant tale. Looking forward to hearing more from Madison County in Wiley Cash's future novels.
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By Mr. D. L. Rees TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 9 Jun. 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Madison County in North Carolina. Marshall a small mountainside community. Sinister pastor Carson Chambliss there skilfully manipulates his gullible flock. Frenzied worship involves poisons and snakes, little autistic Christopher smothered during an attempt to "heal"....

Three narrate: old ex-midwife Addie Lyle; sheriff Clem Barefield; the victim's nine year old brother Jess.

This is a novel for those unfazed if the telling takes its time. These are three clear voices, everything they describe ringing true. Inevitably when tragedy strikes, thoughts are triggered of past troubles. Addie, memories often off at a tangent but interestingly so, is reminded of the other church service death. Jabbingly the sheriff relives the loss of his son. Most movingly, Jess struggles to understand - here the loss of childhood and of innocence.

For many readers events here may haunt for a while. I read at one sitting - angered by the false prophet, saddened by the harm caused. Evil had entered the community and led it astray. What hope now for those afflicted?

Recommended.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This extraordinary novel will certainly stir your emotions.

Set in the oppressive heat of North Carolina, the story unfolds from the viewpoint of three people. Adelaide Lyle is a force to be reckoned with. An elderly, deeply religious matriarch, she has not attended church for ten years because she strongly disagrees with the manner of pastor Carson Chambliss's teaching methods and his dubious healing practices. Instead, she teaches Sunday school to the local children at her home. Clem Barefield is the town sheriff. He's a "regular kind of guy" and a popular figurehead in the community. There is sadness in his past which links him to the family of our third character Jess Hall. Jess is just nine years old, but he has witnessed more than any child should have to.

One Sunday, he spies through a church window at a healing service which attempts to "cure" his mute, autistic older brother Christopher. He not only doesn't comprehend what he is watching, but is scared for his brother. Worse still, he is unable to tell anyone, as he knows he shouldn't have been watching. A further such healing service ends in unimaginable horror when Christopher is smothered to death. Understandably, local feelings run high and the fall out is catastrophic.

Wiley Cash has a wonderful gift of drawing you in to his novel from the first page. His understanding of personalities is first class, no mean feat when they span several generations. I loved this book. It is a pleasure to read and a debut for Cash who has a second novel in the pipeline, also set in his beloved North Carolina. I can't wait!
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