The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson

It’s 1936 and Cussy takes her appointed position as part of the Pack Horse Library Project of Kentucky very seriously. Her designated route brings her upon all sorts of characters along the way – some she is in time able to call friends. Cussy, is also known as Bluet due to her bluish skin, part of the last of the rare blue people ancestry. Part of her mission becomes for people to see beyond her color – a lesson that she needs to learn for herself as well.

Inspired by the true and historical blue-skinned people of Kentucky and the brave and dedicated Kentucky Pack Horse library service, The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek showcases a bold and unique tale of the Packhorse Librarians in literary novels—a story of fierce strength and one woman’s belief that books can carry us anywhere—even back home. 

There are quite a few books out at this time surrounding the story line of the Pack Horse Women of Kentucky.
The Giver Of Stars by Jo JO Moyes
Down Cut Shin Creek by Kathi Appelt
That Book Woman by Heaver Hensen

The only one I have read on the subject was this one and I found it fascinating. Admittedly I knew little of the Pack Horse Women and even less about the blue people. I cheered Cussy on as she took her job importantly even when others did not see what the big deal was. I admired her dedication to get the books ot the people and help them with their reading. A passion after my own heart.

Honestly, this is not a book I would normally pick up. I am however glad I read it and feel like I now know some pretty cool history surrounding the library. We will be discussing this book on ZOOM on Monday, Febtruary15th at 6:00 pm Central time. If you care to join us you are welcome too – find out full information as well as the ZOOM registration link here. Books Burgers and Brews.

(I may have dressed the era recently for a promo on our Books Burgers and Brews Facebook page and then went on to do a mini photo shoot in the dress because I thought it was funny.)

My version of the book woman… I probably should have been baking bread or killing a chicken… instead I appear to be very seriously shoveling the deck.

10 thoughts on “The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson

  1. Greetings from Michigan this morning. I have read The Giver of Stars, enjoying it very much because in the mid 80’s our Presbyterian minister and his wife moved to the hollers of Kentucky. Our family , husband and two teens went to visit another world. Bill, minister, was a Hunger Action Enabler and His wife, Ann, helped the local women sell their crafts. Are you familiar with Berea College in KY? an amazing place👏👏👏 Stay warm..we have good friends in St.Paul and know how cold it can get…and our daughter’s law degrees is from UMN so we have been there in many Winters! my former life, now age 83, I was a college librarian in charge of acquistions 😇 Sent from my iPad


  2. I liked this book and think the horse back librarians are super interesting. And, blue people…what? I ended up researching that a bit after I finished the book because it intrigued me.

  3. Loved this one on audiobook. Cussy was such a fine character and I knew nothing about the blue people or pack horse librarians before. Oh I did read The Giver of Stars on audio too and liked it. Know there was some ruckus about it, but I ignored that and thought both were very enjoyable.

    1. Hi Kathryn!
      We discussed that difference last night during the ZOOM discussion – it sounds that while they are based on the same topic – they are completely different. Giver of Stars I am told focuses more on female friendships where Troublesome Creek is more about hardship and discrimination during that same time period and the Kentucky Pack Horse Librarians. Were those your thoughts too?

      1. Yes totally, both had things to offer. I think I got more out of Troublesome Creek but one enhanced the other as it built my knowledge of the time and place.

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