Cassie Chambers grew up in Owsley County, one the most impoverished communities in the Appalachian Mountains. Her mother Wilma, both beautiful and smart, left the family tobacco farm to attend a small college nearby. As frightened as she was leaving home, Wilma knew this was the key to a better life for her family and herself. Cassie was often looked after in the ramshackle home of her Granny, Papaw and Aunt Ruth. She ran barefoot through the fields with her cousins and other local children. Even though the family struggled to make ends meet, her days were filled with an abundance of love and hard work, the mainstream of their lives. As Cassie matured, she strove for the same accolades her mother had, good grades and an upward climb on the steep education ladder. An opportunity for a unique boarding school in New Mexico during senior year took Cassie away for the first time. A turning point, this filled her with even more drive and determination, which served her well through the most prestigious academic institutions of Yale College and Harvard Law. Always torn between two very different worlds, it took years for Cassie to truly understand and honor the beauty she found in these heroic mountain women who were creative, brave, loving and tireless. With deep admiration and respect for her family, Cassie yearns to find a compromise that will allow her the rewards she has earned and ways to make real change in the lives of these often forgotten women. Highly recommend this compelling work of non-fiction which reads like a novel. Loved it!
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