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Guest post: Patti Callahan Henry on South Carolina’s Lowcountry

October 12, 2010

Even though she lives in Georgia, Patti Callahan Henry always features South Carolina in her books  and I’ve always wondered about that.  When the opportunity to have her write a guest post came up, I suggested she tell us why.  Once you read her post, you’ll be ready to visit the Palmetto State.  (By the way, Patti’s latest book, The Perfect Love Song is an Okra Pick.)

Every heart has a landscape and mine is shaped like the Lowcountry, full of the wetlands and marsh and dancing dolphins. Or so I’d like to believe. I don’t remember when I first fell in love with this land, but fall in love I did.

I have written eight novels and every single one of them has included the coastal region as an integral part of the book. Our family getaway is in Bluffton, South Carolina and I believe that the river that created the land there now carves through my own life. When I am in South Carolina, I can feel my heart slow down, my creative soul wake up and my mind quiet.

This next book is a holiday novella – THE PERFECT LOVE SONG: A HOLIDAY STORY and takes the reader from the Lowcountry to Galway Bay, Ireland. Revisiting two characters from my novel, WHEN LIGHT BREAKS, this new novella lets us now discover what happened to Charlotte and Jimmy.

I have been able to combine a few of my favorite things — the Lowcountry, myth, legend, Ireland and country music — and fashion a story from those seemingly disconnected loves. And isn’t that one of the best things about story – it can be a certain kind of magic that takes dissonant chords and combines them into a melody?

This story is about what happens when Jimmy writes a love song for Charlotte, and his entire life changes, but is it for the better? Sometimes when we get exactly what we think we want, we lose what we love.

As Maeve Mahoney says in the story, “The truth inside the story is what the storyteller aims for…”

One of the most exciting events in conjunction with this novella release is a Finish The Love Song Contest judged by award-winning country music songwriter, Dallas Davidson

For more information on the novella and the contest, visit

I’d like to give a big thanks to Patti for writing this guest post as part of my Literary Road Trip through South Carolina.

17 Comments leave one →
  1. October 12, 2010 7:37 am

    I requested The Perfect Love Song from my library last night. I’m a fan of the author and can’t wait to read her new book! You can tell that she loves the setting of her books. I totally understand loving a place that has a special part in one’s life. I have a place like.

  2. October 12, 2010 8:50 am

    I’d like to visit 🙂 But then I would like to visit most places, they all sound so wonderful

  3. October 12, 2010 9:17 am

    That’s it. I’m not waiting for the SIBA Trade Show to head on up there — that’s a whole year from now! I’m going to have to get up there sooner!! 🙂

    I am ashamed to admit that I haven’t read any of her books, but I’m going to have to adjust and remedy that right away!

  4. October 12, 2010 9:25 am

    So many people say similar things about how they feel when they get to the low country–I love the way Henry puts it: “I feel my heart slow down.” That’s how it feels to me, too.

  5. October 12, 2010 10:10 am

    Strange that I love reading about the Low Country but have never spent much time there. I guess I’m attracted by the way other people love it, and that peace people have said they find there. In fact, it’s a place I have on my list to investigate whenever this big house and land get to be too much for us.

  6. October 12, 2010 11:30 am

    Great post! I’ve never been to SC but now I’m very eager to visit!

  7. October 12, 2010 11:53 am

    South Carolina is a beautiful state — I still remember SC History in 4th grade! I’m looking forward to Patti’s book!

  8. October 12, 2010 11:54 am

    How could I not want to read a book by someone who says “Every heart has a landscape . . .”? Ms. Henry makes me want to go see South Carolina and the people who live there. The only way I can do that right now is read her books. Kathy, you are slyly enticing me to join the Okra Picks.

  9. October 12, 2010 11:55 am

    Must make S.C. a vacation spot some day.

  10. October 12, 2010 12:00 pm

    I really can’t imagine any human being visiting the Low Country and NOT falling in love with it. The atmosphere…you can touch it and hold it in your hands and taste it. It is like a drug. When I worked, we had manufacturing facilities up there and I visited often. I never wanted to return home!

  11. October 12, 2010 2:07 pm

    I’d love to spend time in South Carolina or (North Carolina). Many years ago, I went to Hilton Head Island for a vacation, and loved it. Anyway, this is a wonderful guest post! I’m ready to pack a bag or two and venture to the Lowcountry. Or read The Perfect Love Song! 🙂

  12. October 12, 2010 5:21 pm

    Patti is extremely eloquent and moving when she speaks about what drives her to include the Lowcountry in all her novels, and I am excited to read her newest book. I do have a copy and look forward to getting a chance to explore it. Thanks, Kathy, for posting this great review!

  13. October 12, 2010 5:44 pm

    I have read about and know several people who absolutely love South Carolina and the Lowland Country. I have never been but I hope to get there one day as I would love to experience a place that brings so many people such peace.

    Thank you for asking Patti Callahan Henry about South Carolina. I love what she says about the landscape of her heart being shaped like the lowcountry. That’s beautiful!

    ~ Amy

  14. October 12, 2010 7:37 pm

    Hi Kathy, thanks for the guest post by Patti Callahan Henry. Hi Patti! I’d like to visit South Carolina one day. I’m heading to the US end of December this year and will be there for a month, but I will be at San Diego, Alabama and Mississippi.

  15. October 13, 2010 10:53 am

    This author describes the Lowcountry so beautifully. Glad for the invite. Thank you.

  16. stacybuckeye permalink
    October 14, 2010 8:55 am

    You’re right – I’m ready to visit!

  17. October 14, 2010 10:16 pm

    fabulous guest post! I had the privilege of meeting Ms. Henry (again) Monday evening for the book launch and she was simply marvelous! had the most gorgeous dress on too…and would you believe, jennifer love hewitt was in the restaurant too! but i was too star-struck to go up and get a picture until after she’d left….

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