"I couldn’t put Diane Pickett’s first book down after starting it. A realistic family saga extending over several generations, Never Isn’t Long Enough ultimately tells the story of a good and strong man with plenty of weaknesses, a driven woman who never gets beyond her weaknesses, and the trail of pain they leave as they pass through life in the early and mid-20th century South. Southerners especially will fall for this book set mostly in Georgia and North Florida. Change the names and locations, and it easily could have been about parts of my own family history, and that of anyone else with roots in small-town Dixie.
Pickett packs plenty of love, hate, sex, violence, greed, and gluttony into this little volume. For those who like historical fiction, she paints a picture of the rural South of a century ago that would befit Erskine Caldwell. For those who like their women characters sassy, sexy, and spiteful, Pickett proves the match for Fanny Flagg and perhaps even Margaret Mitchell. For those who can’t get enough of the struggles of imperfect husbands, wives, and their children tied to the land yet always seeking to escape, Pickett easily could stand alongside Reynolds Price.
To be sure, the book is not flawless. Perhaps Never Isn’t Long Enough could use a little less historical explanation and simply leave the backdrop to the reader’s imagination. Some readers – especially those unfamiliar with rural Southern life -- may consider the tale more melodrama than drama. Pickett, however, makes clear that she drew the book from her life. And what a life it has been, even if the book is only partly fiction!
If she has accomplished this with her first try at writing, let’s hope that she’s working on the next installment in what should be a series. Personally, I can’t wait long enough to see it."
Gregory L. Garland, Office of Canadian Affairs, U.S. Department of State
“Never Isn’t Long Enough is a first novel from a Georgia author, presenting a fascinating view of Southern history through the lives of one Georgia family. The patriarch is a fearsome gospel preacher who “came down from the mountains” following the Civil War. Through his descendants we experience the contrast between life on a rural farm and the enticements of big-city living—automobiles, moving pictures, store-bought clothes and more. This is a narrative account—very little dialog. Even so, the story is so well told that I was eager to know the fates of all of the characters. If there’s a soft spot in your heart for the South, you will truly enjoy this book!"
Janet Litherland is the author of several novels including, Worth Dying For, Sweet Justice, The Long Road Home, Song of the Heart, Vanished, Chain of Deception, and Discovery In Time
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