Year 7, Book 80

80. Miss Dreamsville and the Collier County Women’s Literary Society by Amy Hill Hearth

It’s 1962 and Jackie Hart has moved from Boston to racially segregated Naples, Florida where she is not content to let the status quo stand. She starts up a literary society composed of a rag tag bunch of people the rest of the town is not too keen on (a divorcee, a gay man, an African-American maid who dreams of going to college, and a woman just released from prison for killing her husband). She also gets a job as the mysterious Miss Dreamsville, who broadcasts an evening radio show that that whole town goes wild for. Will the fact that she is the beloved Miss Dreamsville get her out of the trouble she stirs up with her literary society?

I would peg this book squarely in the Southern fiction genre. Despite what could be interpreted as the serious subject matter of prejudice in the South during the 1960s, it really feels kind of light and inconsequential. I don’t generally read books that would fall in this genre, so I can’t say if it’s a good or bad example but it definitely really wasn’t my thing. I like my books to have to have a little more weight to them. I give it a 5 out of 10.

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