Review by Choice Review

Monteith (Univ. of Nottingham, UK) explores southern interracial friendships in fiction of the 1980s and '90s by white writers, with special attention to Kaye Gibbons's popular coming-of-age novel Ellen Foster, along with Lane von Herzen's Copper Crown, Ellen Douglas's Can't Quit You, Baby, and Carol Dawson's Body of Knowledge. Monteith's contemporary emphasis and her discussion of several books that have received scant treatment by other critics distinguish this volume from such works as Minrose Gwin's Black and White Women of the Old South: The Peculiar Sisterhood in American Literature (CH, Apr'86) and Diane Roberts's The Myth of Aunt Jemima: Representations of Race and Region (CH, May'95). Monteith says she selected novels "for the different ways in which they structure cross-racial friendships, interactions, and misalliances, textually as well as thematically," adding that "the formal elements never exist in total isolation from wider sociopolitical determinations." Strongly recommended for all academic libraries, upper-division undergraduate level and above. J. W. Hall University of Mississippi

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