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Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite
What I believe to be the second novel in the Mary Fisher Pentalogy, One Little Word by T.A. Peters is a fascinating tale set in nineteenth century Florida. Mary, an exceedingly tall woman with large hands and feet, assumes the role as husband to the winsome Abigail as they travel across Florida on their way home to Greenhaven. They encounter a young girl stranded in the swamps, near the hidden village of Bella. Thinking that the girl has wandered off, the pair carries her to the village in search of her mother. Immediately upon entering the village, the story takes off on a tale that will not let you go, even as you eat and sleep between reading sessions.
I’ve never understood the definitive difference between literary and commercial fiction, and in some books the definition is a toss-up. With One Little Word, there is no doubt of the brand — it’s literary; but I'll be damned if the pace, themes and word-smithing don’t scream commercial thriller. In fact, it doesn’t matter. This is a masterful piece of storytelling, related by an author with extraordinary depth and sensitivity towards several themes that are subtly, but clearly displayed throughout the book. I won’t list them as that would spoil the reading experience.
Mr. Peters has crafted a work of art. His characters come alive in every facet of their development; from speech patterns, as in Mary’s Scottish dialect, to the few words spoken by Ellie. The story reeks with verisimilitude, from the descriptions and technical details of a variety of guns to the realistic fight scenes. The author is a master of introducing themes that are unmistakable but never graphically or completely described while demanding that the reader never stop. The conclusion is perfectly set for the next book and I will read it, and the previous novel, Loggerhead.