Jeremy S. reviewed At Home in the Heart of Appalachia on
Helpful Score: 2
I purchased this book several years ago since much of it takes place in two counties that within an hour of home. At first I was skeptical; next, I became angry. The writer claims to be a West Virginian, but he is actually FROM Philly. A transplant into Appalachian culture is not the same as growing up or "being from" Appalachia; one simply does not have the same insights. Because I know the area, I found some errors of fact related to places and some events. I don't know if statements were made in error or if they were intentional embellishments in order make the book seem more interesting. Maybe someone unconnected to the area will like the book, but it is not a true picture of the lives or culture of Appalachian people and society.
I have not personally read this book. It was given to me by someone from the west coast who enjoyed it thoroughly, being unfamiliar with all things Appalachian. I loaned it to a friend who grew up in the region, and she did not like the author's tone, which she described as condescending. I split the difference when assigning the rating.