Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Sally Wright’s The Outsiding: The Best is Last

Bookish Tuesday
by Donna Fletcher Crow @DonnaFletcherCr

I have often said that the best thing about being a writer is the wonderful people it brings into one’s life. Sally Wright was at the top of my list of those wonderful people. Through the years we shared our writing, our faith, our families. In recent years, updates on her health took their place alongside updates on her writing, because Sally’s passion to tell the truth through fiction never wavered. Her husband Joe told me her last instructions to him were to get her book published.

Sally couldn’t have left a more fitting memorial than The Outsiding, the final book in her Jo Grant series. Here is the blurb I was honored to give: “Sally Wright doesn’t create characters—she breeds living, breathing people right there on the page. Along with her meticulously researched and developed background and intricate plot, The Outsiding is a practically perfect book. And her historical notes at the end are almost as interesting as the novel itself.”

Charles Todd, bestselling author of the Inspector Ian Rutledge Mysteries and the Bess Crawford Series said: “Wright gives us a story of Kentucky horse country that’s articulate and frighteningly possible, a setting that is pitch perfect, and characters who step right off the page; a bittersweet look at people you care about and want to win, a novel you won’t soon forget.”

And Peggy S. Brown, Equestrian instructor and clinician gave a good summary of the plot: “With her characteristic mastery of words, Sally Wright engages her reader with the last of her Jo Grant mystery series, located deep in the heart of horse country, Lexington, Kentucky.  Set in the 1960’s, the thoroughbred breeding industry is undermined by a cunning and highly disreputable veterinarian’s ingenious money-making schemes. The reader is treated to a skillfully woven plot and a cleverly constructed cast of characters who lead us into the darker side of the horse racing and breeding world as well as into the inevitable pitfalls of family business and interpersonal interactions.  A mystery sure to absorb horse enthusiasts as well as those who savor this popular author’s mastery of words and intrigue.  Saddle up for a captivating read.”

The wonderful thing about the written word is that it goes on forever. Sally’s death has left a hole in my life but the wonderful characters she created in her six Ben Reese Mysteries and the three Jo Grant novels she leaves behind are still with us telling their powerful stories in Sally’s inimitable style.

Donna Fletcher Crow is the author of some 50 novels of British history, including Glastonbury, The Novel of Christian England, and 3 mystery series. You can see more about them here and read my tribute to Sally Wright here.

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