The First Lie by Diane Chamberlain


A short story prequel to “Necessary Lies”.

“The First Lie”  is a short story by novelist,  Diane Chamberlain.

It is set in 1958 in South Carolina, when segregation was the norm and illegitimacy was frowned upon. The story of Nonnie and her granddaughters, Mary Ella and Ivy, is a poignant tale of poverty, prejudice and a young girl on the verge of leaving childhood behind. Ivy, the youngest, is thirteen when her older sister goes into labour during the night. Mary Ella is taken to hospital, where eventually, she gives birth. This is a basic outline of the plot, but there is so much more to the story.Ivy, who is the narrator of  “The First Lie,  is confronted with much that she does not understand, but within the short time span covered in this story, she takes the first real steps into adulthood.

I enjoyed this tale very much. Ivy’s voice rang true and helped to build a picture of her character very quickly. I liked to read of the fun times she had with her friend, Henry Allen, as well as the bleaker aspects of her life. I have not read anything else by Diane Chamberlain, but intend to do so after this enjoyable brief encounter.


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