My Old True Love
By Sheila Kay Adams
(Ballantine Books, Paperback, 9780345476951, 307pp.)
Publication Date: September 27, 2005
List Price: $15.00*
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In tones as warm and rich as the sun shinging on his Appalachian home, Larkin Stanton sings the country ballads of his heritage. Even before he could talk, Larkin would hum along with his Granny as she warbled. And though orphaned at birth, Larkin was never alone–born as he was into the clannish, protective Scottish community of the North Carolina mountains in the 1840s and placed under the care of his silver-tongued cousin Arty.
As he grows, Larkin feeds on the subtleties of singing. When he goes head-to-head with his cousin Hackley, their ballad contests produce songs that bring a lump to the throat. And as the boys mature, their competition spreads to the wooing of Mary, the prettiest girl around. But shortly after Hackley wins her hand, he must fight in the Civil War. Left behind, Larkin finds himself inexorably drawn to the woman he has always loved. And what he does next will live on in the mournful ballads of his hills forever.