RE: RARA-AVIS: Raymond, Leonard, and Crews

From: Robison Michael R CNIN (
Date: 15 Aug 2002

Jim Blue, on TOBACCO ROAD and GOD'S LITTLE ACRE: IMO, Miker, it's a toss up. They're both okay. The amazing thing is that they caused such a stir when they hit the street. Much grinding of teeth and wailing about their "immorality." How times change.

********** Thanks, Jim. I think I'll read whichever came first. And I haven't read them so I can't comment on the immorality, but I wouldn't be surprised if, when they came out in the early 30's, the complaints were centered on the sexual con- tent and not a whole lot of ruckus over the family's lack of concern about running over the black guy and killing him.

And isn't there a child bride in one of them? I'm talking 12 years old, here. Of course, maybe that wasn't a great cause for concern back then, either, but I'll bet it's enough to make Vachss soil himself, even now.

I agree with you about how times change, but I'm guessing that Caldwell's books still carry some heavy shock value, but that the issues that shock are different. Gotta be doing something right if you can still manage to disgust people 70 years later. ;-)


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