Until the August 11th release of this:I can hardly stand it, but this month I was delighted when I read this:Included in Pat Conroy's Charleston is a map of places that his characters visit in the book, a list of his personal favorite Charlestonian places, and an excerpt from his book. Talk about whetting your appetite... I could taste what his character ate for breakfast. I could feel the climate he described. I could sense the elitism of his Old-Charleston-South-of-Broadians through their names, their physical descriptions, their speech. It was good stuff. It's been 14 years since he released any work of fiction. It has been worth the wait.
While I've been biding my time, I've been reading this other piece of newly released southern Carolinian lit:I found Dorothy Benton Frank after I had exhausted all of my Conroy options, and I have found her writing to be refreshingly witty. Her characters are endearingly flawed, and while sometimes the endings are neatly tied up packages that seem to challenge reality, the dialogue, the inner monologues, the awkward situations provide for laugh-out-loud moments and keep the reader hooked.
If you are looking for an end-of-summer read, and if you love the Carolina coast, check one of these two out for sure.