A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty is a powerful saga of three generations of women, plagued by hardships and torn by a devastating secret, yet inextricably joined by the bonds of family. Fifteen-year-old Mosey Slocumb-spirited, sassy, and on the cusp of womanhood-is shaken when a small grave is unearthed in the backyard, and determined to figure out why it's there. Liza, her stroke-ravaged mother, is haunted by choices she made as a teenager. But it is Jenny, Mosey's strong and big-hearted grandmother, whose maternal love braids together the strands of the women's shared past - and who will stop at nothing to defend their future.
©2011 Joshilyn Jackson (P)2011 Hachette Audio
"A mesmerizing tale of a family coping with the revelation of a secret that will change their lives. . . Jackson's most absorbing book yet, a lush, rich read with three very different but equally compelling characters at its core." (Kristine Huntley, Booklist, Starred Review)
"A deeply felt, engaging story." (The Atlantic)
"Highly immersive... a compelling page turner." (Publishers Weekly)
This was my first audible download, and it definitely didn't disappoint! I was hooked on the story by the end of the first chapter, and listened at every opportunity until the story was over. The story and the characters drew me in very quickly. I particularly enjoyed how the chapters were from a rotating point of view, with enough variation in the writing and reading style to instantly know whose point of view you were listening to. Joshlyn Jackson's performance was fantastic, really adding to my enjoyment of the book. I highly recommend this audiobook.
"Beautifully written and read!"
I recently listened to Hunger Games and 11-22-63 and loved both. However, I really needed something in the here and now - something real I could relate to. I found it in this lovely book. My family didn't see much of me this weekend because I was tucked away in the heart and soul of this book. This is my first book by Joshilyn Jackson but it won't be my last. I highly recommend this book!
"This One Ought To Butter Your Biscuit"
"Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion." Truvy from Steel Magnolias
Kept seeing this title scroll down the "what's trending in fiction" column with 5 stars and felt like I was missing a fun parade! I'd never read Joshilyn Jackson, (embarrassed to admit I'd never heard the name) but, I love a parade; gardening and iced tea was on the day's agenda--perfect pick.
If you are a fan of Southern women fiction (or is this a Southern comedy/drama?) this one will surely butter your biscuit. It reminded me just a little of the gals from Steel Magnolias(Truvy, M'Lynn, Ouiser [Weeza], Shelby). The characters are quirky and fun, the family bond is touching, the humor is self-deprecating fun and not belittling, and there are some catchy phrases that will keep you smiling and laughing to yourself. Not my usual type of read, but I found Grown-Up Kind of Pretty a sweet, fun, easy listen that was pure enjoyment. The overall consensus I get is that this is also a Jackson fan favorite, one of her best, so a good introduction to J. Jackson; good suggestion from fellow listeners! While not all authors should read their own work, I enjoyed Jackson's performance and thought it was a treat to have her do the narration. Great fun, appreciate the recommendation, and I enjoyed a perfect day!
"Sad for it to end .."
I feel like I need to read Joshilyn Jackson's books with a highlighter in hand. Her turns of phrase are so perfect that I want to remember them. I would (and will!) listen to this again because it's a wonderful story, beautifully read.
The characters draw you in from the first chapter.
She has a real southern accent that adds to the telling of the tale.
The title is pretty perfect.
"A rare one!"
A Grown-up Kind of Pretty was wonderful. I've listened to hundreds of audiobooks and this one is first rate.
I generally hate it when authors read their own books, they often ruin what would be an otherwise wonderful book, not so this one. Joshilyn Jackson makes this book sing!
My first thought when I listened to the sample of this book was
"Hang in There"
These three southern beauties deliver in this story, but after a bit of a start and stop beginning. Others reviewers have set the stage describing the plot, so I'll just say that this is a good book, an enjoyable read. I did feel it got off to a slow start and maybe it is because the narrator/author sounds very much the same in each character so make sure you pay attention in the beginning of each paragraph where the author/reader indicates who is speaking in the first person.
And I did glow in the loveliness and the fun of the characters', especially Mosey's southern (we called them) diddy's...cute as a pixie sayings.
Wow - different, powerful, disturbing yet enchanting. You will want to find out what really happens and though you might think you know, cause you know, you have heard it and seen it or read it all, ah no, you have not. This book is not an "easy read" , but a well worth read. Heavy at times, but also brings you close to the characters. I would get, even if not on sale.
"Rare and true"
How it drew me in and kept my attention.
When one character was speaking that was the one I favored. It kept changing as they all are compelling, flawed, beautiful in spirit and love.
So rare that an author can narrate this well. Loved it.
Complex story line which surprised me as I thought it might be the standard 3 generation cook book variety but it was wonderful to listen to and original.
"I wanted to cheer out loud!"
Have only listened, but Jackson is one of very few authors that I look forward to hearing read her own work.
If I had the time, yes.
The best of Jackson's books that I've read so far, and I've enjoyed all I've read immensely. The author breathes real life into her quirky, loving characters, and gives us a mystery to solve as a bonus. The strength and southern sass of Mosey and especially Big make them immediately accessible, and through obvious stroke research and instinct for human nature, even Liza becomes a fully developed member of the cast. Supporting characters are all spot-on. The ending made me want to cheer out loud. I recommend Jackson's books to all of my reading friends, and try hard to get them to listen to them as audio books for the wonderful reading by the author.
"My first but not last for this author"
I enjoyed this story, having taken a chance on an author I didn't know. I was put off at first when I saw that the author was reading her own book, as that often doesn't work, but in this case she did a wonderful job and it added to the experience. It was a "southern, chick lit" book if that is a real genre - if not, that is my description. Being a northerner, I find it really interesting to read about the southern perspective and I always enjoy the accent. I will definately be listening to more of this author in the future!
"Love it! Truely amazing! Another Jackson Win!"
J. Jackson has done it again. Creating a clan of characters that cling together and journey to find the truth.
Joshilyn gives a wonderful performance of all the characters. Well written, wonderful story, well developed characters.
Every time I had to stop listening I spent my time waiting to be able to dive back into the lives of these 3 amazing ladies. A journey worth the trip. This novel left me willing to fight for what is good and right and just in this world.
"A nice little book, and a good listen"
Joshilyn Jackson obviously knows her characters really well, and I think that is why she narrates the book really well, and gives each of the characters their own distinct voice. Initially I wasn't a big fan of her voice and accent, but after listening to the book for a while, she grew on me.
The book is about three generations of Slocumb women, Ginny (Big) age 45, Liza age 30, and Mosey age 15. In the beginning of the book something happens to upset their lives forever, and the book is basically about how each of the women deals with this event.
Ginny, called Big by Liza and Mosey, is the head of their little family, and I fought with her in spirit when she is struggling to keep her girls safe. Liza suffered a stroke, but she is nonetheless a character that will intrigue you. I really like the way Joshilyn Jackson has written Liza's inner world that has been so deeply affected by the stroke. Liza is a flawed character, but that is why I adore her.
****SPOILER****** SPOILER ******** SPOILER ******
The reason I won't give this book 5 stars is because of Mosey. They way she responds to her mother and grandmother often seem unrealistic. If I found out my mother wasn't my real mother, I wouldn't suddenly stop caring about her and my grandmother. She just becomes this ungrateful brat who runs amok. I also could not understand how she could even think Big doesn't know about her real heritage, that just seemed really stupid to me. Any logical person would realise that her smart grandmother would know the truth. The character just isn't very credible. It feels like Jackson tried to create a unique teenager, but instead Mosey comes off as a stereotypical teenage girl (incl terribly annoying frequently used phrases, and text messages, which are read out). that just seemed flat to me. I found myself being incredible annoyed by her at times, but on the whole she was just interesting enough for me to keep listening.
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