Helen Yitah


Lee Smith’s tenth novel, Saving Grace, tells the story of Florida Grace Shepherd, the daughter of a snake-handling preacher, whose memories of Scrabble Creek, her childhood home, inform her search for self definition. Gracie as she is fondly called arrives with her family at Scrabble Creek, a mountain community in North Carolina, from Atlanta, Georgia. When the Shepherds arrive at Scrabble Creek her father, Virgil Shepherd, sets about establishing his Jesus Name Church while Fannie, his wife, busies herself transforming an abandoned cabin into the family’s home. As they cheerfully embrace a life of poverty Fannie joyfully presides over the hillside with its “bright blooming flowers and new green trees” (88). Blooming daffodils and forsythia combine with Fannie’s cheerfulness to produce a convivial atmosphere that will hold for Gracie her most cherished memories. After Fannie commits suicide Gracie’s world is torn apart as Virgil, initially moving with her from one fundamentalist congregation to another, eventually abandons her. “As a person [… ] searching for hard ground in a world of shifting sands” (164), Gracie marries Travis Word, a preacher, but finding no substance in this relationship, runs off to Creekside Green with Randy Newhouse, a young man with whom she falls in love. But there is “no creek at Creekside Green, nothing green either” (234), and her split with Randy over his infidelity leads her to begin her journey back to Scrabble Creek, the only home she has ever known, and to the memories she must confront in order to come to terms with her present.

Full Text: PDF


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Download the IISTE publication guideline!

To list your conference here. Please contact the administrator of this platform.

The Editorial Correspondence should be addressed to: The Editor, Globus, Journal of Methodist University College Ghana, P.O. Box DC 940, Dansoman – Accra, Ghana.  ISSN: 2026-5530