-Winston Groom, author of Shiloh, 1862 and Forrest Gump
"Kaye Park Hinckley is a writer with a sensitive ear and a keenly developed sympathy for her characters. Her debut novel, A Hunger in the Heart, marks the beginning of a promising career in the world of fiction."
-Mark Childress, author of Georgia Bottoms and Crazy in Alabama
It is 1955 Florida, and Kaye Park Hinckley's debut novel, A Hunger in the Heart, brings it alive with memorable flawed characters who all desire something. Sarah Neal longs for her husband, Putt, a WWII hero with a traumatic brain injury, to be like he was before the war. Because he can't be, she fills her longing with whiskey. Coleman, their son, needs his father and wants his mother's love and affection. C.P., the B.O.S.S. of Gator Town, Florida, and Putt's dad and Coleman's grandfather, wants everything to be normal, and he yearns for his dead wife's forgiveness.
They all must learn how to live through tragedy and treachery when Putt is accused of a heinous crime. Fig, the gardener, with commonsense wisdom explains to Coleman, ". . . a hero makes a choice to put somebody else ahead of himself," and Anna, Coleman's first love, teaches him the most valuable lesson of all.
This is a story, ultimately, of hope and love: How we find it and thrive in even the darkest circumstances.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book is about a war-damaged 1950's family. Today, similar stories play out as our veterans return from battle: a young son's loss of a vigorous father, a wife's loss of a communicating husband, and a grandfather's loss of his only son. In this absorbing story, anger, frustration, and questioning, lead each of them to respond uniquely, but they all hunger for a restoration of love. Wonderfully sensitive writing!
The writer's style is Southern, and more. She is a Catholic, published by a Catholic Press, and I see some of Flannery O'Connor in her novel and its characters. In "Mystery and Manners," O'Connor states: "I have found that violence is strangely capable of returning my characters to reality and preparing them to accept their moment of grace." There are moments of grace in "A Hunger in the Heart," that will take the reader's breath.