August of Deliverance

Fiction - Literary
693 Pages
Reviewed on 08/31/2020
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Ruffina Oserio for Readers' Favorite

In August of Deliverance by Michael Cameron, a twenty-one-year-old woman takes a break from college to explore herself and indulge in her obsessions in the most unlikely of places. As a middle-school girl, Kristi Lou was unusually tall and frightened by her height, as her tallness compelled her to feel terribly uncomfortable with herself. She felt unfeminine. Now, however, as a young adult, Kristi Lou loves being leggy and tall, but struggles with inner demons such as her OCD and other gripping obsessions. She goes to Downtown Secrets, a blues club. Everyone in the community knows the lure for most patrons has little to do with dancing, unless it is lap-dancing in the “VIP Room,” where interactions typically progress from dancing to debauchery. It is here that she indulges her obsessions, but she knows she has to find herself through the loneliness of a hot August. Will she ever feel comfortable with herself?

Michael Cameron has crafted a compelling story of personal transformation and one woman’s journey to overcome self-doubt and build a positive sense of self. It is a story to which millions of people can relate, especially those who are overly conscious about their physical appearance. Kristi Lou Jones is a character who goes through a journey that positively affects those she encounters and raises questions about social systems that are oppressive, bullying, religion, and sexuality. The story is filled with drama, insightful writing, and told in a voice that is both compelling and compassionate. August of Deliverance is a psychologically rich narrative that gripped me from the very first page — thanks to the author’s gift for descriptive prose and strong setting — and had me turning the pages until the very end. An interesting tale that had me thinking about how I look at myself.

Christian Sia

August of Deliverance by Michael Cameron is a mesmerizing story that follows the journey of an unusually tall seventh-grade girl. Kristi Lou Jones is one of those people who don’t feel comfortable in their own skin, and her height, which contrasts with that of her diminutive teacher, makes her feel as if she isn’t feminine. This breeds a strong sense of insecurity in her. When she turns twenty-one, she decides to use her size to her advantage, so she takes time off from school and enlists in Downtown Secrets, a brothel in Detroit. On the outside, it is a blues music club, but on the inside, it is a whorehouse, and Kristi indulges in her obsessions here. Kristi confronts her nudity and reaches a moment where she has to decide who to become.

August of Deliverance is a character-driven story that explores the theme of personal development brilliantly. The protagonist is richly developed and I enjoyed how the author captures her sense of desperation and the discomfort she feels with her natural body. The path she travels to come home to herself and in search of self-confidence is unusual. The prose is beautiful and the story filled with vivid descriptions. Kristi Lou Jones is a character to whom readers can easily relate, for each person has that part of him or her with which he/she does not feel comfortable. The setting comes out clearly in the narrative. I also enjoyed how Kristi Lou Jones’s self-consciousness drives her to conflict in school. Michael Cameron is a good storyteller and his novel succeeds in entertaining readers while asking strong questions in the area of personal development and self-image. Well-plotted and deftly written.

Rabia Tanveer

August of Deliverance by Michael Cameron is the story of a woman who learned to love herself the hard way. Kristi Lou Jones was very tall and that was the bane of her existence once upon a time. She went through hell because of her stature but, as an adult, she has learned to embrace it and now uses it to her advantage. She worked hard but didn’t do well when it came to romance. She kept her clientele under control, but try as she might, she could not control her life. This tall blonde bombshell had a hell of a ride yet to come and she was not ready for the curveball her life was about to throw at her. Was Kristi ready for the next big adventure called adult life?

This absolutely brilliant novel had surprising strains of humor in it, something that I was not expecting at all. For some reason, I was expecting this story to be very serious and hypersensitive, but it was neither. August of Deliverance was a very descriptive story, one that explained everything in such vivid detail that made it impossible for me not to fall in love with it. Kristi was the kind of character who made me feel at ease even when she was going through major chaotic times in her life. Her middle school life was miserable and so Michael Cameron showed us how miserable it was for her. I felt like a part of the story. I went through every milestone with Kristi and enjoyed her triumphs with her. Watching her grow and develop as a woman who was comfortable in her skin was an experience unlike any other!