Fair and Tender Ladies, by Lee Smith

For her August 2005 book club discussion, Reader’s Review, Diane Rehm has breathed new life into Fair and Tender Ladies, the 1988 epistolary novel by Lee Smith. Set in pre World War I Sugar Fork, Virginia, tucked into the Appalachians, Smith’s letter-writing protagonist, Ivy Rowe, is as prolific a storyteller as Smith herself. Ivy had big ambitions to be a writer but an early pregnancy and marriage turned her, instead, into a non-stop correspondent throughout her life. Based on letters that Smith picked up at a garage sale, Fair and Tender Ladies is one of those timeless stories to be cherished over and over.

Rehm and her audience will discuss Fair and Tender Ladies on Wednesday, August, 17.