Flat Broke with Two Goats: A Memoir by Jennifer McGaha
Hi, I’m Dani and I am an emotional reader.
I cry when a character dies or goes through a hardship, I blush when things get steamy, and I get indignant with the best of them when I read about social justice issues. I am aware of this. Nonetheless, as I have been reading Jennifer McGaha’s memoir this week as part of the Big Library Read campaign facilitated through OverDrive, I truly believed that the work was not having an effect on me. I believed that up until the point tonight when I picked up a barbecue sandwich and a Diet Cheerwine from the store for dinner before ending the evening drinking wine on my deck. Unbeknownst to me, my Southern done snuck up on me, and I blame the book.
I am a modern Southern woman. This means I can turn the charm and drawl on and off at will depending on the situation. But this book brought it all out in the open. McGaha’s authenticity, her connection to the places she is talking about, had me hooked early on. While I suspect the audience might be primarily those below the Mason-Dixon on this one, I still think it can resonate for anyone with an affection for nature and the strength of the human spirit.
Flat Broke with Two Goats is McGaha’s tale of trials post-Recession while she rode out some hefty financial troubles with her husband in a shack in the mountains of Western North Carolina. She went from the dream suburban life back to living off the land (sort of) and while she describes their tribulations with the melodies that are so true to Southern identity, she makes sure the reader knows it was no picnic in the park.
My rating: 4 glasses of lemonade= a book you could recommend to a book group or anybody who reads. You might find controversial subject matter, but it is handled delicately.
Despite the fact that this title was marketed as a global read, there are some things that might turn away a few readers. I counted a total of 3 curse words (one somewhat warranted, two that probably weren’t), but it is a memoir…so you get the real language. Probably more concerning is that there was no mention in the summary I read about domestic violence, and the author is a survivor who spends one chapter describing some of what she went through. It was graphic enough that I would give this read a trigger warning.
I got this title from my library’s OverDrive subscription with no expectation of a review.
For more from Jennifer McGaha, check out her website: https://jennifermcgaha.com/
To purchase the book, check out Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Flat-Broke-Two-Goats-Memoir/dp/1492655384