GET THEE BEHIND ME: My Life as a Preacher's Son by Hartzell Spence
Kirkus Star

GET THEE BEHIND ME: My Life as a Preacher's Son

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A sequel to One Foot in Heaven in much the same sense that Big Family was a sequel to Country Lawyer. The first book focussed the father, a zealous minister in the Methodist Church, whose endless moves at the behest of the Conference, kept his young family in a constant state of upheaval. The son stazts his story with the last part of the Danver period, then the scene shifts to an Iowa town, with the adjustments entailed. I found it entertaining reading, and sympathetically (mentally) swapped experiences related to the all seeing eye of the critical congregation. But Methodism in those days imposed strictures that an Episcopal clergyman's household never knew -- rules about cards and dancing and movies and theatre; about Sunday routine and Saturday quiet. Hartzell and Elleen found ways around some of the rules, but all of life had to be snatched in small and stolen morsels. Conscience was at war with inclination, with Mother sometimes on one side, sometimes on the other, and Father occasionally breaking down. Revealing picture of one segment of American life.

Publisher: Whittlesey