You made memories with words... That was how he would speak love. He would sing with words""- many, many words to retrace Jim Blackstarr's childhood into manhood on a farm in the Shenandoah Valley- from the time when he first goes to school, until the time when- in considerable agony- he turns his back on those blue hills of Virginia. Jim is not only full of words and hopes of becoming a writer (his first teacher- Miss Irene Carpenter- encourages his talent) but he is trapped by the turbulence of adolescent sexuality. His first love and his most longstanding is Betty Lee and he plans to marry her- after forswearing the intimacy of one summer's indulgence; there is also his cousin Nory who makes seductive overtures; and finally Miss Carpenter, who not only stimulates his writing, but understands all his needs. Their affair- and the hopelessness of a young boy's love for an older woman- leads to her suicide, to his realization that he cannot marry Betty Lee, and that he must leave home-- alone..... A first novel, this is verdantly undisciplined, and for many this youthful burgeoning will be blighted by the ""shua nuff"" southern styling and spelling.