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Reviewed by Lesley Jones for Readers' Favorite
In Tilted by Nancy Hall, on the Spring Equinox 1960, 17-year-old Meshac Brownlow's 3-year plan of revenge has arrived. Today she plans to kill her mother's boyfriend George before her younger sister Irene falls victim to his predatory ways. As Meshac lures the unsuspecting George to an isolated part of Wicket Mississippi, she has no doubt that this is the only course of action she can take. With an alcoholic mother and deceased father, her siblings are relying on Meshac to protect them. Even after George has been murdered and thrown into the swamp, Meshac has no regrets. With her siblings in the safety of their Aunt Flora, Meshac travels the long journey to Tennessee to escape her past, arriving in Nuanz. Meshac finds lodgings in a hotel and begins work in a local cafe. She meets some colorful characters, including a young girl, Grace, with whom she instantly bonds. However, when Meshac begins a relationship with a young boy, her memories of the past come rushing back, filling her with self-hatred. Meshac believes happiness is something she doesn't deserve. When a local child is murdered, and Meshac and Grace are viciously attacked, the once-sleepy town is shaken and the status quo is threatened, never to return. Will her desire for a fresh start will ever be accomplished? Will they ever catch the murderer, her attacker, or find George's body?
I was hooked from the powerful first paragraph of this amazing novel. The action and suspense are only interrupted by moments of engaging conflict. The characters have been created with such loving care. The detail given to each character is outstanding, whether it is through their dialogue or behavior. I feel I know the characters so well. I loved Edna, she was strong, dependable and very wise. I feel everyone would benefit from having a friend like her. The relationship between Grace and Meshac was heartwarming. The moment where Grace speaks at her friend's funeral was particularly heartbreaking. Grace only spoke a few words but they were so well chosen. The attack scene was upsetting to read but only because I cared so much about the characters involved. There were scenes of racism and segregation, which were important to include and made the storyline that much more realistic. I loved the inclusion of the Epilogue as it tied all the loose ends together perfectly. This novel is highly recommended.