As Good as True by Cheryl Reid

As Good as True

A powerful and haunting novel of a woman’s broken past and the painful choices she must make to keep her family and her home.August 1956. After a night of rage and terror, Anna Nassad wakes to find her abusive husband dead and instinctively hides her bruises and her relief. As the daughter of Syrian immigrants living in segregated Alabama, Anna has never belonged, and now her world is about to erupt.Days before, Anna set in motion an explosive ...

Details As Good as True

TitleAs Good as True
Release DateFeb 1st, 2018
PublisherLake Union Publishing
GenreHistorical, Historical Fiction, Fiction, Mystery

Reviews As Good as True

  • Meg
    PowerfulThis story beautifully illustrates a family torn by cultural experience, racial issues and difficult topics. The author is a powerful writer and I cannot wait for her next novel. This book was not what I expected, it was better.
  • Melissa Leatherwood
    I finished it, but I didn’t love it. I admire the perseverance and the strength portrayed here, yet the clinginess to guilt over things completely out of her control was tiring and incongruent. The understanding of complex race relations I have no experience with in a time I wasn’t there for was what I was after. A woman beating herself up for not being a better mother, when she did just fine, and her spoiled brat ridiculous daughter holding ...
  • Bonnye Reed
    GA As good as true is a wonderful novel. Cheryl Reid brings to us the pain and joy and love of childbirth and motherhood, the duties we owe our parents, the necessity of familial bonds, and the injustice and repercussions of segregation of all sorts. Until we can all live as one family we are bound to fail at the art of humanity. Prime January free Kindle 01/01/18Was not able to review on B&N until 2-1-18
  • Jessica
    A powerful book which addresses many different themesThis book revolves strongly around two key themes: Grief and domestic violence. Although many other themes play a strong part, such as racism and alcoholism.Vega's (Anna) late mother is at the forefront of her mind throughout the story and well into her adulthood. It is clear from the get-go that losing her mother has greatly impacted her life, and that of her father who struggled to cope with ...
  • Erin-Elizabeth
    Quite a tough read.There’s a lot going on here. A story of segregation and female oppression, domestic violence, anger, death, grief...I could go on. I found it quite a slow read and was expecting the story the really kick-start for most of the novel. It was only when I reached the 80% mark that I realised that it wasn’t actually going to really go anywhere. The flashbacks of Anna’s life were a happy (although that’s a poor choice of word...
  • cecelia niezgoda
    Great readTotally enjoyed this book. It was frustrating at times that Anna/Verga was so accepting of husband's bad behavior, until you put it in perspective. Not a big difference between the Old Country and Alabama in the bigoted 1950s . Everybody was supposed to know their place and suffered the consequences if they tried to change the status quo. A likeable heroine . . .
  • Kathy Averbeck
    This story intriqued me from the first page but by about half way through, I was about ready for the book to be over. I did not find the main character a very sympathic person even though her story was quite traumatic. I felt that she brought a lot of it on herself and did not deal with her circumstances very well.
  • Melissa
    I have so many mixed feelings about this book. Ultimately, I think this stems from the fact that there are certain things that Reid treated really well, and other things that were handled not so well.The themes of domestic abuse in a small town environment and the complexities of race (to a certain extent) in the late 1950s Deep South were handled well. The domestic abuse plot had depth and nuance - Anna's efforts to hide her bruises to shield he...
  • Smile24k
    Powerful and moving! I am extremely stingy with 5-star ratings, but I have very few complaints about this book. One of the criteria I use for giving a book five stars is whether it would be worthy of a book club or discussion. This book would be perfect for a book club. It makes me sorry that I am no longer in a book club, because I would love to get into the weeds of this book. My other criteria for five stars is whether I would pay for the book...
  • Emily
    Heavy stuffThis book was captivating, well written and interesting. The characters were well developed, as you certainly loved and/or hated each of them. This book is not for someone looking for a happy story, however. This book is full of sad, depressing, dark themes and does not really come to a happy ending, though I do feel like the ending is appropriate for this book. I don't mind reading these types of books because they often make you thin...
  • Michelle
    A familiar story... a woman in the South during the Jim Crow era has a complicated relationship with her family and the community. The twist is that she is Arab. Anna/Vega grew up with African-Americans on the wrong side of the tracks as her family owned and operated the local store. She marries Elias, an abusive husband who owns and runs the store in the white side of town. Anna stays in the marriage for the sake of the chillren and the story un...
  • TheWitchyBookworm
    Wow, what an emotional ride.I didn't know what to feel for Anna at times. I found myself angry with her choices and what she was unable to do or say. But yet I struggled to feel sorry for her for her weaknesses even though at times I wanted to weep for her. It was always back and forth.I wanted to see justice and apologies and I wondered at what would happen as the book ended. I wondered about Nelly's attitude towards thing after the baby was bor...
  • Jessica Cross
    If you're looking for a book that just keeps getting more and more depressing, look no further. The first half seemed to have a lot of plot contradictions going on, and I feel as though this could have used another round of edits before being published, but it does ease up in the second half. Many of the same sad scenes were repeated in almost the same language, but some of the flashbacks offered tiny bits of happiness that helped me push through...
  • Helen
    Really not my cup of tea....very disappointed. I thought it would be such a great read from the description but instead it was slow, repetitive and downright boring in my opinion. I couldn't finish it (got just over half way through). I don't know if it was just how I was interpreting it but the main character just seemed to be whining all the time....I imagined her voice to be whiny and pathetic....which I suppose was what the author was trying ...
  • Debbie Shoulders
    Cheryl Reid weaves together multiple themes in her first novel: spouse abuse, racism, and acceptance. But it works. The narrative is so tight that the big issues bind with the smaller ones. Anna's family settled in Riverton, Alabama from their native Lebanon, as well as her husband's family. The small town is racially divided with Anna's father's store being in the mounds, or African-American side. Her husband Elias' store is located in the white...
  • Janice Gritz
    I enjoyed the writing and descriptive passages. The author clearly depicts the pull of the water on her main character. The main character, Anna, almost refuses to be happy. She has tragedy in her young life, but when given choices she always seems to choose what appears “right” but then continues to suffer when no one appreciates her sacrifices. She is so bound up in her unhappiness that she doesn’t see the love her husband and daughter of...
  • Janet
    I almost have a love/hate relationship with this book. I grew up in the seventies. I lived through segregation, the Vietnam War and Woodstock. I had black children in my classes and never thought a thing about it. But in the eighties I moved to the deep south and was surprised-no shocked- at how Negroes were treated. I love strong women heroines but Anna/Vega was something else. There were many “side-stories “ going on and at times it was a l...
  • Joanna Pedagno
    Wil not everyone's cup of teaI was almost scared away by some of the reviews, but I'm glad that I decided to a order this book. It is extremely well written and the story moved me emotionally with its truth and telling of the bias and prejudices that plagued the pre civil rights movement. But what resonated even more deeply was the horror of spousal abuse. I agree with the reviews that said this is not a feel goods story. But that is the point. I...
  • Jessica Russell
    I don’t quite know how to review this book. I didn’t enjoy it- it was depressing and haunting and it made me feel anxious even when I wasn’t reading it. But the story and its themes are so intense and heavy and felt so important. Domestic violence, race relations in 1956 Alabama, the immigrant experience, mother/daughter relationships, death and birth... god. I feel guilty feeling sad because the characters have such heavy burdens to carry....
  • Donna O'Day
    StirringThinking back, I’m not sure what drew me to this book, but I don’t think I was prepared for the depth of emotions that were stirred. I immediately connected with Anna, the narrator, and both trusted her judgement and questioned her judgement. As Good ad True draws such a vivid picture of love for our children, our parents, our family members, and our fellow humans. And it dares to call out that our love can be blended with resentment ...
  • Jenae (Jeni)
    I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. It was a Kindle First Reads and not my usual genre. But I was pleasantly surprised with the flow of the story. It brings a lot of emotion to the front. I'm not overly fond of the ending, I feel there should have been maybe one more chapter. But that could also be from reading cliffhangers and HEA books so much. I definitely recommend this book to adults, but also want to warn about TRIGGERS. There is m...
  • Irene M. Ochoa
    A slow burn of a read, but yet a continuous page turner that keeps you gripped to the next chapter. There’s a line from the main character where she states that her favorite flower is a peony because it starts as a tight bud that keeps opening to something glorious. Although the subject matter of this book is not glorious, the way it is explored and developed is quite expansive as the petals of a fully blossomed peony.
  • Shari Ring Wolf
    Amazing first novelI read this book in one sitting. The book is so well written I became immersed in it—I forgot I was reading a work of fiction. The social climate and subject matter are serious, the characters believable and perfectly flawed. I usually don’t care for “dark” stories but I prefer dark to unbelievable brightness. This one struck a good balance. Highly recommended.
  • Mary Barrett
    Three starsThis book deals with two very disturbing situations. The racial hate that was so rampant in the 1950's and domestic violence. The book was probably well written but having had to deal with the hopelessness of many victims of both domestic violence and racial injustice in my career, I was unable to read the entire book. This is one that I just skipped to the ending. It left me in tears.
  • Bridget Glover
    A very interesting tale of race relationsI enjoyed treading this book because it reminds you that when you're dealing with race, it's bigger than black and white. There's are other races and ethnicities which had to exist around ignorance and intolerance and still find their place in America. Although the entire book occurs in the span of 3 days, these have to have been the most turbulent 3 days Vega's life. The story will hold your attention fro...
  • Dixie Petersen
    Eye opening to say the least and very well written!We've all heard segregation stories, if you haven't you should. A well written story from the part of America's history as a growing nation that brings home, with one story, the pain, the selfishness of a nation built on all of us being created equal and the freedoms taken for granted by so many today. So much hate should never happen again in this nation, yet it is every single day.
  • Crystal
    This is a beautiful book about the struggles minorities face in our society, about the many facets of relationships, and about what it looks like to persevere in the face of danger. Although set in the 1950s, much of it would remain true today. It was painful to read at times, as it contains many vivid scenes of domestic violence, and could be a trigger for someone who has experienced abuse of any sort.
  • Claudia
    Doing Right Isn’t the Easy RoadMany lessons can be learned from this work. Listen to the elders, young people. Know someone well before committing to them. There is no black, white or in between; there is simply, people. If you see abuse, TELL! Bigots are ignorant and untruthful people. Stand in your truth.
  • Robert Robertson
    BookI enjoyed this book. The story about Lebanese emigrants living in the American South in the 1950's rang true. The racism which existed then is highlighted and unfortunately it still seems to exist.I sympathized with the main character and felt for her. The story is like life it leaves some lose ends but life is not tidy.
  • Nilene D. Mosher
    Excellent bookI found it difficult to put this book down. There are so many levels to this story; the immigrant experience, the African American experience in the south, living in an abusive relationship and mother -daughter relationships. I found myself re-reading passages to savor the author's words and the truth to be found there. I truly loved this book!