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by Adrienne Petterson © 2007     About Me

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Redneck Woman - Stories from My Life
by Gretchen Wilson
Warner Books
ISBN 0-446-58001-5
Published November 2006 - Hardcover - 202 pages - $23.99

Admittedly, I didn't know anything about singer/songwriter Gretchen Wilson, but I had heard her fun song "Redneck Woman".  This is the story of her rags to riches life, one which started out in rural Illinois and ended up in Nashville.  It wasn't an overnight thang either.  Very much aware of her roots, Ms. Wilson tells her story with honesty, openness, and humor.  You've got to admire her guts and determination to succeed and live a better life.  Her young life, with her young mother, younger brother, and abusive stepfather, was a constant state of moving from place to place.  School to school.  Her mother's husband was manipulative and was always threatening violence, and constantly convinced everyone that things were going to get better.  They never did.  They continued to move from one place to another.  And all along the way the ones who made the biggest impression on young Gretchen, were the strong women.  I completely agree with her when she says, "In my experience, not only does a woman not need a man to "complete" herself, she can often get much further along in life without one, or at least certain ones".  Neither of us hate men by the way.  Her young and impressionable years involved working in a bar, hustling pool, singing in bands, alcohol, and mixing with a wide variety of people (great grist for her songwriting mill).  Perhaps the best thing Gretchen Wilson learned once she'd moved to Nashville, was who she really was, and stuck with it.  After all, it's easiest being yourself.  Not bad for a high school dropout.
Conclusion - Very inspiring and I loved and appreciated her down to earth attitude to life and success.

book cover

Review copy not supplied by publisher - library copy reviewed.

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