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Sugar Fork

Title:  Sugar Fork
Author:  Walt Larimore                                                                                                                   
Pages:  384
Year:  2012
Publisher:  Howard Books
     What an awesome way of telling tales within the folds of the Smokey Mountains scenery!  At first glance perhaps the paperback might cause some to think this to be a simplistic fable.  I must inform anyone thinking this way, however, that wouldn’t be accurate at all.  Walt Larimore writes of faith and the differences in lifestyles between mountain folk and those referred to as flatlanders.
     One of the prominent features is that there is not so big a difference as the antagonists of the book would have the protagonists believe.  For example, in the life of Abbie, though young by flatlander’s standards, she is considered an adult once she has a driver’s license.  Mountain people look at death as part of life.  While there is a time to mourn, they then figure it is time to move on once the period of mourning is over.  One year a doctor from Philadelphia comes to Sugar Fork to do an internship.  After his internship is over, he plans on returning to the big city.  Wade can’t see himself settling down and living happily so far removed from the hustle and bustle as well as conveniences of the city.
     Abbie is the oldest of five girls.  Her three brothers died in infancy.  She has had to assume the motherly duties as her mother passed away, and her father is out providing for them.  Through various trials, Abbie grows and blossoms not only into womanhood but into a faithful believer as well.  There is a fight brewing between a lumber baron and Abbie’s family to preserve the virgin timber on their land.  Mr. Calhoun attempts all types of deception, underhandedness, as well as pay-offs to the right people in order to “legally” evict the family.  Calhoun’s assistant makes several attempts to scare those who are helping the family and is, unfortunately, successful a couple of times.
     There is a lot to this story told from the view of an elderly Abbie, and the use of flashback in telling the story makes it all the more captivating.  Learning to live by faith everyday is shown to be a choice especially tested when life brings sorrow upon sorrow.  The parts of the story cover certain months in a particular year, which leaves purposeful gaps so that the reader isn’t lulled into inattentiveness.   I loved the way the young doctor used the wisdom and treatments of herbal medicines developed and then, if necessary, newly discovered antibiotics.  The cool part was then the doctor asked for prayer and had others praying for Abbie when she was very sick.  Seeing the use of spiritual and medicines together is awesome.  I have been the recipient of such loving treatment from a physician.  Sugar Fork has a theme of reminding us to utilize faith in the Almighty and if need be medications that seek to treat both soul and body in that order.
     Please read this novel and enjoy it.
     My rating is 5 stars.
Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility.  Other reviews can be read at .  Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988, FaceBook at

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