A Real Southern Lady

Bobbie Lamont #3

Fiction - Literary
418 Pages
Reviewed on 10/02/2023
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

A Real Southern Lady is a work of fiction in the interpersonal drama, literary, and women’s fiction subgenres, and forms the third novel in the Bobbie Lamont series. Penned by author Zelmer Wilson, it is best suited to the general adult reading audience. As we continue the story of Bobbie's journey through life and love, we find ourselves in New York City in the 1990s. Bobbie has left behind her hometown of New Orleans to start anew as an associate editor at Black Springs Press. However, despite the distance, Bobbie finds that her past and memories continue to haunt her. The loss of her love, Miller, lingers in her heart as she navigates through life, advancing in her career and searching for love in different relationships.

Author Zelmer Wilson has a great narrative flair for conveying the complexities of different characters and types of relationships as the story delves into both Bobbie's romantic pursuits and her close friendships, particularly her enduring bond with her best friend, Billie. The variety of relationships and their engaging dialogue interactions give us so much information and relatability without ever having to be spoon-fed, and the novel’s tapestry of drama beautifully captures the essence of personal growth, the complexities of relationships, and the enduring power of friendship. Bobbie's journey is relatable, and her character is both endearing and multifaceted as she tackles each new plot event with gusto. The book offers a nostalgic and atmospheric glimpse into a specific time and place, making it a compelling read for those who appreciate stories of self-discovery and the enduring bonds of friendship. Overall, I’d certainly recommend A Real Southern Lady for fans of the existing series and the series in general for readers seeking realistic dramas with plenty of heart.

Alma Boucher

A Real Southern Lady by Zelmer Wilson is realistic urban fiction. In her new position as an associate editor at Black Springs Press, Bobbie Lamont is en route to New York City. A few months ago, Bobbie met Miller, a young man, who changed her life. It was supposed to be a summer romance, but Bobbie fell in love with Miller. Bobbie struggles to get over Miller, and her roommate, Natalie Adams, cannot wait to show her New York, hoping to take her mind off Miller. Bobbie's boss assigned her the responsibility of reading unsolicited manuscripts after noticing that she had a knack for discovering new talent. Bobbie met Henry Young, the best-selling author, and they had a special friendship. In the pursuit of new love, Bobbie hops from one relationship to the next and tries everything to be happy again.

A Real Southern Lady was extraordinary and exciting to read. Zelmer Wilson had me hooked from the first page until the last. The plot was brilliantly planned and executed. It was fast-paced and a page-turner. I was on a rollercoaster ride with all the action and did not want the ride to stop. A lot was happening in the story, and it was easy to follow. The characters were fantastic, and I felt I knew them. My favorite character was Bobbie. I loved it when she told Natalie that she may sound like a Southern lady, but she is a redneck at heart. Bobbie grew so much through the story without realizing it. The story was brilliantly written, and I kept on reading to the very end, hoping that Bobbie would find love again.

Jamie Michele

In Zelmer Wilson's novel A Real Southern Lady, Bobbie Lamont starts a new chapter in New York City. Her heart still carries the heaviness of her former relationship, but she strives to prove herself at Black Springs Press. As time passes, Bobbie's relationships with coworkers and authors develop, sending her on global journeys where she digs up family history. Bobbie's professional prospects broaden with promotions and tangled relationships, but she finds it difficult to fully embrace the future while haunted by powerful forces of the past. Through a series of personal and professional twists, Bobbie seeks love and fulfillment while wrestling with the memories that persist from her Southern roots to the bustling streets of New York City.

A Real Southern Lady by Zelmer Wilson is a tale of love, friendship, and a woman on a path to a successful career. Wilson's storytelling prowess shines, and it made me desperate to revisit New York City and, somewhere in the middle, boosted a yearning for my own Parisian adventure. Wilson's dialogue is one of the most striking aspects of the writing because it consistently comes across as true and organic, allowing me to identify with the characters and fully understand their motivations. It also serves to advance the plot and illustrate key details about the characters without telling us outright. Subtle hints and foreshadowing mix with underlying tension, especially in Bobbie's internal struggle with her relationships. I developed a fondness for Bobbie and Wilson as an author and for the author's brand of storytelling. Very highly recommended.

Asher Syed

In Zelmer Wilson's novel A Real Southern Lady, Bobbie's work at Black Springs Press earns praise from boss Fay and a renowned author, leading to a weekend in New York City. Emotional upheaval ensues with Billie's move to Boston, stirring feelings for Bobbie's past with Miller. Throughout various holidays and gatherings, the group's friendships evolve but soon bubble over during an awkward encounter at a bar. As personal and professional lives intertwine, from promotions to complex relationships with writers, their journeys lead to France, uncovering family histories, solace, and even a connection through music. Bobbie's opportunities in the literary world expand, but it's incredibly difficult to move forward when all the heart wants to do is look back.

A Real Southern Lady is the third book in the Bobbie Lamont series by Zelmer Wilson, and it is all kinds of fun. Wilson's characters are always well-developed, and in book three, we get to know Bobbie pretty intimately. Still, what makes Wilson's work stand out is that even this far in, Bobbie's struggle with her professional identity and her attempts to balance them with people who ride in both, specifically Jasper and Natalie, really tug at her exploration of love and personal growth. There's alcohol, powdery white drugs, sex, and loads of poor decisions that should not be made under the influence, which essentially sums up New York in the 90s. Wilson is on fire with culture and an immersive, authentic atmosphere. The book ends on a hopeful note and with some extra room for more storytelling, and I look forward to seeing what Wilson puts out next.