11 October 2016

Today's Read: Truevine by Beth Macy

Truevine by Beth MacyWhat would you do if your children were snatched by the circus and forced to be displayed as part of what was then called the Freak Show? This is the true story of a mother's search for her sons after they were kidnapped by the circus.

The story seemed so crazy, many didn't believe it at first, black or white.

But for a century, it was whispered and handed down in the segregated black communities of Roanoke, the regional city hub about thirty miles from Truevine. Worried parents would tell their children to stick together when they left home to see a circus, festival, or fair.
Truevine by Beth Macy (Hachette Book Group, Little, Brown, 2016, Chapter 1, ARC)

Quick Facts
  • Setting: Truevine, VA and everywhere the circus went, early 1900s
  • Circumstances: The Muse brothers (six and nine years old) were African American albinos who, in 1899, were lured into the circus after a side-show scout told them their mother had died. Harriet, however, was very much alive and determined to rescue her boys no matter how long it took and how arduous the task.
  • Genre: nonfiction; investigative journalism
  • Themes: circus life, motherhood, kidnapping, brothers, Jim Crow South, sociocultural attitudes toward the disabled and different
  • Things to know: Beth Macy takes a broad focus: we learn about the brothers and what they endured in the circus, we follow their mother's search to find them, and we meet current family members. There is a photo insert in the book, some of which you can see in the following video.
  • Reviews: Most reviews have been very positive. In fact, Truevine is a finalist for the Kirkus 2016 Prize.


collettakay 10/11/16, 7:13 AM  

I tend to prefer fiction to nonfiction but I hope you enjoy!


Vicki 10/11/16, 7:31 AM  

Wow! I don't understand how some people can be so cruel. This book sounds really interesting, thanks for sharing it. I hope my library has it.

Sarah (Sarah's Book Shelves) 10/11/16, 7:32 AM  

I've been hearing so much buzz about this book and I really loved the opening you shared. How is it so far? I have it on my radar for nonfiction november.

Vicki 10/11/16, 7:33 AM  

I checked and my library has it on order. I can't wait to read it!

Anonymous,  10/11/16, 7:42 AM  

Oh my goodness - what a shocking story! I hope you enjoy it. Mine is a lot more lighthearted this week... https://sjhigbee.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/teaser-tuesday-11th-october-2016/

Unknown 10/11/16, 8:21 AM  

I'm going to have to put that one on my list.

Mine this week is from a cozy mystery: https://wp.me/p3Nz8P-Xl

bermudaonion 10/11/16, 8:42 AM  

Macy spoke about writing this book at SIBA. It sounds like a fascinating story to me and I can't wait to read it.

Kym 10/11/16, 8:43 AM  

This sounds a little disturbing - not sure it would be for me.

Here's my Teaser/Intro for this week: http://justasecondblog.blogspot.com/2016/10/teaser-tuesdayfirst-chapter-first.html

Unknown 10/11/16, 8:51 AM  

Such an ugly truth. I have a feeling this will be an engrossing read.

My TT from PooP

Daryl 10/11/16, 9:58 AM  

i have never liked the circus ... once long ago my father took me to see Ringling Bros at Madison Sq Garden and i refused to see/go to the sideshow .. scary stuff ... this book would give me nightmares

Unknown 10/11/16, 10:03 AM  

How very interesting! I think I'd keep reading!


Laurel-Rain Snow 10/11/16, 10:36 AM  

Now I'm curious! Not my usual read, but I do want to know what happened. Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.

The Candid Cover 10/11/16, 10:50 AM  

Such an interesting book! I have never heard of this happening and I would love to more about this. Thank you so much for sharing! :)

Literary Feline 10/11/16, 12:11 PM  

This sounds fascinating, especially since it's a true story. THank you for sharing!

Catherine @ Book Club Librarian 10/11/16, 2:05 PM  

I find the blurbs shared quite shocking. How horrible for the parents and children.

Margot 10/11/16, 2:44 PM  

This sounds like a heartbreaking, yet fascinating story. I'd like to read it.

Cleopatra Loves Books 10/11/16, 3:31 PM  

What a horrific story but a fascinating one nonetheless - I do hope you enjoy your read Beth

karen 10/11/16, 3:40 PM  

I'll definitely be scouring my library for this one. I've always loved the true stories behind the freak shows and circuses. Well, "love" might be the wrong word since they're often horrific. "Fascinated" by them ... THAT fits.

Unknown 10/11/16, 4:42 PM  

This sounds like an interesting but tough read. I think I'd pass. Happy Reading!

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea 10/11/16, 7:46 PM  

I don't think I could read this one. Seems rather sad.

Yvonne 10/11/16, 9:41 PM  

Not a genre I usually read, but this does sound interesting.

rhonda 10/11/16, 9:54 PM  

I love nonfiction I have this one on my pile sounds so interesting so sad.I'll be interested to see what you think.I'm starting The Unsettlers by Mark Sunderland a search on how to live more simply.Check it out he goes on a search to find the new pioneers,i

Nise' 10/13/16, 9:55 PM  

How awful that this could happen.

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