THE SOUTHERN LADY by Lonnie Coleman


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A crossing on a freighter puts Douglas Fisher, a writer, originally from the South, at the mercy of the small group of passengers who are aboard:- an old lady from Indiana on her first fling; two elderly sisters in their unhappy bondage; another well-aged, insular couple; a voracious nympho of sixty odd; and this group, either bromidic or eccentric, easily dominated by ""the southern lady"", a Mrs. Theodora Langley who with her gracious, stereotypic airs and attitudes holds court over all of them- except Douglas. He, however, is haunted by her fleeting look of recognition when she first comes aboard, taunted, by her, for his pro-Negro novels, and finally, on the last night, he is able to provoke her admission of her Negro blood- and a final repudiation when she takes her life. Still caught by her memory, he goes back home- to face his widowed mother with the long feared, long denied suspicion of his own mixed blood.... A strange book, this has a certain surreptitious fascination owed as much to its delicate assault on a touchy theme. If no less limited, it is perhaps the best book Lonnie Coleman has written.

Pub Date: June 18th, 1958
Publisher: Little, Brown