Book Reviews of Mudbound

Author: Hillary Jordan
ISBN-13: 9781565125698
ISBN-10: 156512569X
Publication Date: 3/4/2008
Pages: 336
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.

4.1 stars, based on 66 ratings
Publisher: Algonquin Books
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

40 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Mudbound on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 6
The storytelling is good, but the story being told is dark and troubling. A thought-provoking book, but not a fun read.
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Helpful Score: 5
Reminded me of Places in the Heart (Academy Award winning movie). Not a sunshiny read, but more like real life. A good, classic tragedy. She created a real time and place for me. I felt compassion for some and disdain for others. I thoroughly enjoyed it and found it easy to pick up, it stayed with me and I still think about the characters. Haunting.
reviewed Mudbound on + 5 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Very moving, touching story with real characters and a distinct Southern feel. Racism is a huge theme here, along with the horrors of war, lust, and a search for tolerance and acceptance. I thoroughly enjoyed this one, as it moved me deeper than I allow most novels to affect.
reviewed Mudbound on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I loved this book. If you liked "The Help", you'll most likely like this book. The setting is Mississippi post WWII and encompasses many topics; racism, segregation, Nazi Germany, women's rights. It's similar to "The Help" without any humor. I couldn't put it down once I started it.
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Helpful Score: 2
This was an amazing book. You see different parts of the story through the eyes of a different character, but you never feel like the story is disconnected or choppy. I thought it was beautifully written and evoked so much emotion. You're angry, empathetic, sad, hopeful, disgusted, happy, and sorrowful all at the same time. That is just wonderful.
reviewed Mudbound on
Helpful Score: 2
LOved this book!! As did my teenage son and husband. I liked exploring the south from the vantage point of an intelligent woman, her freindships with her maid, how she saw WW2 and the Jim Crowe laws. I felt I learned fresh perspectives on Germany and the South which was refreshing. The book was well written and a fast read. I look forward to Hillary Jordan's next book!
reviewed Mudbound on + 29 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
What a wonderfully told story! The words flowed off the pages with such ease and I was drawn into the story so quickly. Having said that, I don't mean to say that the story was a happy one, just a well told one. Henry, Laura, Jamie, Ronsel, Hap, Florence and Pappy, are all characters whose lives are intertwined in rural Mississippi at a farm called Mudbound. It is the Deep South in the 1940s and racism abounds, setting up a tragic chain of events.
Favorite passage: God never gives us a task without giving us the means to see it through.
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Helpful Score: 2
This is a great read. It gets a little difficult at times, given the subject matter. I'd highly recommend it.
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Helpful Score: 1
Fantastic storytelling by the author. Gives a great picture of the Delta in Mississippi in the Great Depression.
reviewed Mudbound on
Helpful Score: 1
This is an intense read in which you may come away with a deeper understanding for the burdened hearts and minds of those who are discriminated against. The final chapter, in which Ronzel shares his point of view, is loaded with thought provocation regarding how difficult it truly often is to simply "rise above." The characters are powerful and the drama even more so. I would love to see this book head to the big screen. If you can handle the dark realities of racism and are drawn to stories set in the deep south, stories that educate, this is one good read.
reviewed Mudbound on
Helpful Score: 1
I read. I read a lot. This is without a doubt in my Top Ten of personal favorites. The plot itself is fairly decent, with no major surprises.
This story doesn't shine because of the plot. This story shines because of the characterization. This author has given us some of the most alive fictional characters in recent memory. These people live and breath and the dialogue is some of the best out there.
Do yourself a favor and read this book.
reviewed Mudbound on + 22 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Enjoyed the alternating chapters revealing what each character was experiencing and thinking. It's good modern Southern Lit. Would be excellent for a reading group.
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Helpful Score: 1
Mudbound is a well-written story about a bleak time in American history--the 1940s in Mississippi under Jim Crow laws. Life is hard on the cotton farm that is setting for Mudbound, hard for Laura who misses the simple luxuries of her city life in Memphis and for Florence and Hap, the black sharecroppers on the farm. Prejudice and inequality are rampant. But the intensity of the novel accelerates when Laura's brother-in-law, Jamie, and Florence and Hap's son, Ronsel, return from World War II combat. One is haunted by the trauma of war and seeks solace in booze. The other is challenged by a hatred and inequality that he thought he had defeated in Europe. In the end, bigotry and cowardice combine with tragic results.
reviewed Mudbound on
Helpful Score: 1
The book was enjoyable until the end. The ending soured my opinion of the book as a whole.
reviewed Mudbound on + 912 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This was an outstanding read with all the drama of a southern tale, raising cotton, racism, women's roles and more. I highly recommend this one.

Several characters tell the story. There is Laura, an educated woman who is a college graduate who marries Henry McAllan. In other chapters Pappy, Henry's father, becomes narrator. In still others we hear Florence, a sharecropper wife whose husband works for Henry, and her son, Ronsel, who becomes a friend to Jamie, Henry's brother who takes his own turn in the telling.

At age 31, Laura, thought she would be an old maid, but Henry, the oldest son of Pappy McAllan, falls in love with her. Pappy ives with Henry's sister until her husband dies. Henry's dream as been to return to the land and farming. When his brother-in-law dies, Henry finds himself trying to help his sister and take care of his father. Without discussing his dream with Laura, he buys a piece of land near Marietta GA. He has rented a house in town for Laura and the girls. However, Henry is naive about such arrangements and loses the house because he has no lease. The family must move onto the farm where they live in a ramshackle shack with a leaking roof, and no electricity, phone or plumbing. Laura adjusts to the new home but will not have Pappy in the two-bedroom house so a lean-to becomes Pappy's bedroom. Pappy makes her life miserable. He is mean, prejudiced and sold the family land as soon as he could which left Henry or his brother without land of their own.

This is the story of the McAllan family's life in Georgia. It is outstanding in so many ways. I enjoyed it so much that I searched for another novel by this author almost immediately.
reviewed Mudbound on
Helpful Score: 1
The best book I've read all year.
reviewed Mudbound on + 98 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
An absolutely wonderful book set in the deep South and dealing with racism, love, hate, confusion, guilt and hope all rolled into one. I loved it!
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This is a book that will stay with its reader long after the last riveting page has been read. It is deserving of all of the accolades it has received. Each chapter, told by a different character, brings a very clear vision of the time, the people and the prevailing attitudes in rural Mississippi during the mid 1940's. The sparse prose is reminiscent of both Steinbeck and Faulkner. The horrific ending reminded me of The Grapes of Wrath, another novel that has stayed with me after reading it long ago. There is an irony in this book being published during the same year that a black candidate is running for President.
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I loved this book!
reviewed Mudbound on + 2 more book reviews
emotionally intense book about two families in small town in Mississippi after World War II - one black, one white - and what happens when the sons become friends.

this is an autographed copy of the book
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Great book! The writing is excellent with interesting twists in the plot. You will be thinking about it long after you finish the book.
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A powerful story about life in the south post WW2 with surprise twists and unique perspectives from multiple characters point of view. a good read!
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At first I found this book to be depressing. I wanted to reach into the pages and shake some of the characters to get them to take charge of their lives and not be so pushed around.

The story takes place in rural Mississippi and describes a rural lifestyle that may have completely disappeared from the American landscape.

The book opens up with two brothers burying their dead father. It's implied that the father may have been murdered - or maybe not. Also implied that one of the brothers is not too unhappy that the father is gone. And finally, there is some tension between one brother and the other brother's wife.

The story then jumps back many years, finally coming full circle to meet up with the opening scene.

In the end, I was very happy with where the story went and how everyone ended up. I would recommend this book.
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The characters are all well developed, the story is tightly told, found it hard to put down.
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Really gripping book.
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This book is sort of the other side to life presented in The Help. In The Help, most things turned out in the end. Not so for this book.

This book is about a white family who moves to a farm in Mississippi. The farmer husband and the dutiful wife call the farm Mudbound since rain makes it impossible to get off the farm.

An African American tenant farming family on the land rounds out the main character list. Each chapter is told from an alternating point of view (wife, brother, son of the tenant farmer), but the book is really easy to follow.

There is no happy ending here. Just a terrible picture of the evils of racism. But one that moved me and that I will remember.
reviewed Mudbound on + 48 more book reviews
This is not easy reading, but I found it compelling, holding my interest right to the end. It is a graphic portrayal of life for people of color living in the South during the 1950-1960's era.
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Mudbound is one of those books that you enjoy, but you can only read so much at one given time or you get angry often. It deals with issues such as racism and PTSD. There is a whole cast of characters that piss you off except for a select few. It is set in The Mississippi Delta on a cotton farm after World War 2. You have a white family (Henry and Laura McAllen including Henry's severely racist father, Pappy)who owns the farm and a black family (Hap and Florence Jackson) who sharecrops there. They live in a town where racism runs as rampant as the Mississippi River does. Enter in the brother of Henry, Jamie McAllen and Ronsel Jackson, Hap and Florences son. Both boys have arrived home after having served overseas in WW2. Both boys are struggling to deal with ptsd and life back on the farm in the delta after all that they have went through.

There are a few incidents that occur that are horrific and everyone's lives are shattered by what occurs. I only felt sorry for the Jackson Family. What happened to them should have never happened and they did not deserve it. The McAllen's should have suffered some more if it were left up to me. Laura is so incredibly selfish that what she does in the end is never ever forgivable. Pappy met his match, but should have suffered a bit more in my opinion.

It's a good book, just be prepared for some serious injustices.
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I devoured this book within 24 hours. I haven't read a book that grabbed me that way in years. Hillary Jordan is a fantastic storyteller. I hope she's working on another book!
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Really quite an amazing book that is incredibly thought-provoking and actually breath taking in parts. I learned a lot, and was left with a lot to think over after reading this. It is not a "light" read, it is really a book that will make you contemplate how people are treated in our society as well as gender and racial roles. Very skillfully done and well worth it.
reviewed Mudbound on + 11 more book reviews
This was a 2008 favorite of mine as well! I't painful to read about the Jim Crow South--epscially post WWII. Men of all races & backgrounds fought for this country. All were heroes, but not all were treated as such. I hope to see more from this author.
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This will be the best book I read this year! I'm flying through it and loving every page. It reminds me a bit of Sandra Dallas who I love.
reviewed Mudbound on + 45 more book reviews
The story is told from six different viewpoints during post WWII in 1946 and it is set in Mississippi. It tells the story of the complex relations between a black family who farms the land and the white landowner and his family. It covers a plethora of topics, from racial inequality, prejudice, post traumatic stress syndrome, and the unlikely friendship of two soldiers returning from the war, one being white and the other black. It is a well-paced and well-told story, albeit a gut wrenching one. It does serve to remind us how far we have come as a society and at what costs it has taken to get there.

I enjoyed this book but once finished I felt like I really hadn't read anything all that new. Maybe I've read too many books covering this subject and time frame. It was good but not outstanding.
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Great story told in an intriguing style. Author comments at the end are worthwhile also.
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I hesitated to start reading this book at the time I did because I had just finished reading Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice and I just couldn't imagine getting into a story so widely different than the one I'd just finished, but I'm glad I read it because it is a stunning story about real people and how awful some people are for the stupidest, most backward, ignorant reasons one could imagine. It evokes almost every emotion you could imagine and I couldn't wait to read the next word.
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Wonderful book, I put off reading it thinking it would be slow but I finished it quickly.
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I really loved this book..........beautiful writing.
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Very Good. Interesting perspective. Well told.
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Wonderful book, I put off reading it thinking it would be slow but I finished it quickly. Audio is great with different voices for different characters.
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I enjoyed this book I could not put it down