mom mondays: midnight in the garden of good and evil book review

This is part of my bi weekly segment called Mom Mondays. You can find out more information about this segment here!

4 stars!

tw: racism (microaggression and outright racism), racial slurs, homophobic/transphobic slurs 

Preface before I get into the actual review: Mom and I picked up this book solely because it was based in Savannah and we recognized where the cover picture was taken. Savannah Georgia is the birthplace of the founder of Girl Scouts, Juliette Gordon Low. Why does this matter? I was a Girl Scout for 12, 13 years? Basically forever. Going to Savannah was the first major trip I’ve ever taken and it was the first trip Mom and I took together. This place will always hold a special place in our hearts.


I honest to god have no idea what I just read. I think it was a story about the author’s life in Savannah? That’s what I am going with and what the author’s note said. But it was still one of the weirdest and most interesting books I’ve ever read.

This book was actually really interesting, like I mentioned above. I will admit, the synopsis was so so and I wasn’t super into it but that quickly changed once I realized that it was a character driven story. I am so weak for character driven stories. Seeing the progression of growth throughout the course of the book is the best.

Of course, there is a plot. There are two parts to this book. The first part is getting to know the characters. There are many side characters and it was hard to keep track of them all at first. Luckily, each character had such different personalities, it was easy to catch on after a few pages. The second part was the trial of Jim Williams, who was convicted of shooting Danny Hansford, which are two of the several different cast of characters.


I much preferred the first part over the second part. I’m not really into court proceedings unless it’s about something really interesting. Not that saying murder isn’t interesting. This paragraph is a nightmare. Basically what I’m saying is, the trial details were kind of boring since they were rehashed so many times.

The author portrays Savannah so well. Savannah is seriously so amazing and the author captured the small town feel of it well. It is very believable that he actually lived there. His descriptions of the houses and the squares were on point. The squares of Savannah are incredibly important and they are what makes Savannah what it is. If that wasn’t mentioned, this book would have gotten a lot lower rating than 4 (four) stars.


I must talk about some negatives, however. This book will offend people. Like I mentioned in my trigger warning, there is a lot of racial slurs along with homophobia and transphobia. The use of the n word and the f word are very much present. I’m not excusing the use of the language. I’m just letting you all know that it is there. Practice self care if you do choose to read this book.

I must also note that there will most likely be some people that will be upset with how a trans person is portrayed. It is a very stereotypical portrayal and I know that it will upset people. The author’s note in the end of the book says that each character is a real person and that the only things that were changed about them is looks and names, to protect them. So this may be how she actually is, but I can’t say for certain, hence why this paragraph exists.


Overall, I am pleased as punch. This was one of the most interesting books I’ve read and I certainly will not be forgetting it anytime soon. It makes me miss Savannah and now I want to go back. As usual, I end my posts with who I would recommend the book too. This one is hard. I’m not really sure who to recommend it too. Maybe if you have visited Savannah and want to learn more about it, this might be the book for you. This book does talk a lot about the history of Savannah and major events that happened at different time periods of Savannah. Maybe if you like character driven books that don’t necessarily have a plot, then this might be the book for you.




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