Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Homecoming of Samuel Lake by Jenny Wingfield

    “Every first Sunday in June, members of the colorful Moses clan gather for their annual reunion at “the old home place,” a sprawling hundred-acre farm in Arkansas. Samuel Lake, a handsome young preacher with a huge heart and strong convictions, has brought his wife, Willadee Moses, and their three young children to the festivities. For the children it’s a time to vacation away from the prying eyes of their father’s congregation, and for Willadee it’s a chance to be with her beloved mother and father. But tragedy strikes, jolting the family to their core and setting the stage for a summer of crisis and profound change.

Samuel soon learns that he has lost his parish back in Louisiana, so he and his family take up temporary residence on the farm. Everyone is drawn to Samuel’s eleven-year-old daughter, Swan, with her outspoken questions and mischievous spirit. Swan, in turn, is fascinated by her powerful, secretive Uncle Toy, a war veteran, and his sultry wife, Bernice, an old girlfriend of Samuel’s whose desire to win back her old beau is a bit too obvious. But when Blade Ballenger, an eight-year-old neighbor, comes into Swan’s life, she focuses all her fierce energy on keeping him safe from his terrifying father, never realizing the possible dangers to herself and to those she loves.”

Two words…Southern Gothic. They had me at those two simple words in the book description. There was no way I was turning down two of my favorite genres. As a Southerner I love Southern Literature, it will always hold a place in my heart when written truthfully and from the heart. Secondly I love gothic literature as well for it’s beautifully blended combination of horror and romance. Combine the two and I am in reader’s heaven. And I must say that Jenny Wingfield does a masterful job of combining the darkness of human nature within the idyllic setting of the South although I am not sure “gothic” would be the term I would use.

This book is honest, heart-rending and downright tragic at times but above all it’s real. From the setting to the characters, reality abounds. It’s almost as if you could step into any small town and find a family like the Moses or unfortunately even a snake like Ras Ballenger. Wingfield knows her South, she knows the people, the places and the day to day life and it shows in her masterful writing. From the slow way of life to how she makes biscuits…the South shines through in her work.

One of the most interesting aspects of the book are the characters who are so genuine, you’d swear you knew them in real life. Swan Lake especially sticks out and reminds one very much of Scout from To Kill A Mockingbird. From the first few pages with her I felt the resemblance immediately. I have since seen other reviews that felt this similarity. She’s a true, honest and yet fiesty character and although the book is not told solely by her she still has that quality about her that leads most of the storyline and draws readers to her automatically. The supporting cast of characters is also strong making each one a treasure to discover.

In the end The Homecoming of Samuel Lake is truly exquisite example of a master storyteller in her element. Jenny Wingfield was also the screenwriter of the movie The Man in the Moon which I adore so I had some high expectations. I have to say she exceeded them all with a debut novel that is truly a joy to read.

Please make sure to check out all the other stops on the TLC Book Blog Tour.

Book Giveaway

One lucky reader of Stiletto Storytime will win their very own copy of The Homecoming of Samuel Lake. Giveaway ends midnight EST August 24, 2011. US/Canada addresses only please. The winner will be chosen by and notified by e-mail address. Good Luck to all and Happy Reading!

To enter simply comment below on a Southern writer you might recommend and why you enjoy their work.

Want extra entries? You can get an extra entry by doing any of the following:

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime

Be/Become a Follower Stiletto Storytime on Twitter (Leave Name)

Be/Become a Follower of Author Jenny Wingfield on Twitter (Leave Name)



Filed under Adult Books, Blog Tour, New Books, Southern Literature

36 responses to “Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Homecoming of Samuel Lake by Jenny Wingfield

  1. Ruthie B

    Celia Rivenbark…from NC where I am & is a ‘hold your sides’ laughing writer. She has a new one called ‘You Don’t Sweat Much For A Fat Girl’ that I plan on reading soon!

  2. The last Southern novel I read was one by a debut author: Bloodroot by Amy Greene. The novel spanned several generations, and Greene did a great job at developing the characters. I really felt their joy and sorrow in the book.

    Please enter me in the draw!

    darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  3. +1 following Stiletto Storytime

    darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  4. +1 following Stiletto Storytime on Twitter (@DarleneBookNook)

    darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  5. +1 Follower of Author Jenny Wingfield on Twitter

    darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  6. Margaret

    I would recommend Lisa Patton. I just recently read one of her books and enjoyed it!


  7. Margaret

    I’m a GFC follower


  8. Pingback: Jenny Wingfield, author of The Homecoming of Samuel Lake, on tour July/August 2011 | TLC Book Tours

  9. I’m so glad this turned out to be such a great read. I’m excited to pick it up myself. Thanks for being a part of the tour.

  10. Robin Barbaree

    Loved, loved, loved The Homecoming of Samuel Lake! Fabulous read, and I will cherish this story forever!

  11. This sounds wonderful! I can’t wait to read it. No need to enter me.

  12. Lisa Patton is a great author-her characters are really fun to read about. edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom

  13. Janis Rothermel

    James Lee Burke is one of my favorite southern writers. He writes stories about a parish in Louisiana near New Orleans. The genre is mystery, but his books are deep and rich with stories of the south. His account of Hurricane Katrina in one of his books is the best account I have ever read; it brought me to tears. I eagerly await each new Dave Robicheaux series book, and I highly recommend them to anyone who likes a good mystery set in the south that also includes a great love story. Start at the beginning of the series, and you will want to read straight on through.

  14. For me, living in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, anyone is a Southern author! I am a fan of Willa Cather…Old school Southern, perhaps?

  15. Na

    No Southern writer comes to mind but I have always liked Southern stories. There is a sweet charm about the place that goes beyond the sweet tea and accent, it’s in the community. It seems after all life has thrown at Samuel Lake, he deserves that homecoming very much.

  16. Na

    I am a GFC follower.

  17. I loved this book, too — I’m so with you on how real the characters were. Swan totally reminded me of Scout — from the first page, she burst out so fully formed. I got teary at the end — I wanted the book to go on for another 300 pages!

    • stilettostorytime

      She reminded me of Swan too…then I was doing some research before I wrote my review and I kept coming upon people saying that. I wonder why we feel that way…is it her Southernness…her intensity or both? It’s interesting so many of us find that connection.

  18. mamabunny13

    I love reading John Grisham’s books because they are page turners.
    mamabunny13 at gmail dot com

  19. mamabunny13

    I’m a Follower of Stiletto Storytime
    mamabunny13 at gmail dot com

  20. mamabunny13

    I’m a Follower Stiletto Storytime on Twitter @mamabunny13
    mamabunny13 at gmail dot com

  21. mamabunny13

    I’m a Follower of Author Jenny Wingfield on Twitter @mamabunny13
    mamabunny13 at gmail dot com

  22. Marjorie

    I have never read a book by a southern author so I would not know.
    I however could certainly start with this book.

  23. Marjorie

    I follow by google reader as cenya2.

  24. I like Karen White – true Southern Gothic w/ big houses, eccentric characters and ghosts!

    kherbrand at comcast dot net

  25. I am a follower (through Feed Demon)

    kherbrand at comcast dot net

  26. I am a twitter follower – @kherbrand

    kherbrand at comcast dot net

  27. I follow Jenny on Twitter (@kherbrand)
    kherbrand at comcast dot net

  28. Would love to enter! Just in the nick of time. I am a follower of the blog (in Google Reader) and on Twitter (@ofabookworm).

  29. I have always enjoyed reading Jesse Stuart. His book: “A Penny’s Worth of Character” was a great teaching tool for my young students about making the write choices.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  30. I follow you/ subscribe via email

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  31. I follow you on Twitter
    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  32. I follow Jenny Wingfield on Twitter
    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  33. stilettostorytime

    And the winner is…Ruthie B! Congrats Ruthie! And thanks & Happy Reading to all who entered! Also make sure to check under the “Giveaways” tab at the top of the page for more exciting giveaways here at Stiletto Storytime!

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