Deborah Mantella, author of My Sweet Vidalia, on tour February 2016

Posted By on December 1, 2015

My Sweet VidaliaAbout My Sweet Vidalia

Paperback: 272 pages

Publisher: Turner (October 6, 2015)

On July 4, 1955, in rural Georgia, an act of violence threatens the life of Vidalia Lee Kandal Jackson’s pre-born daughter. Despite the direst of circumstances, the spirit of the lost child refuses to leave her ill-equipped young mother’s side.

For as long as she is needed–through troubled pregnancies, through poverty, through spousal abuse and agonizing betrayals–Cieli Mae, the determined spirit child, narrates their journey. Serving as a safe place and sounding board for Vidalia’s innermost thoughts and confusions, lending a strength to her momma’s emerging voice, Cieli Mae provides her own special brand of comfort and encouragement, all the while honoring the restrictions imposed by her otherworldly status.

Vidalia finds further support in such unlikely townsfolk and relations as Doc Feldman, Gamma Gert and her Wild Women of God, and, most particularly, in Ruby Pearl Banks, the kind, courageous church lady, who has suffered her own share of heartache in their small Southern town of yesteryear’s prejudices and presumptions.

My Sweet Vidalia is wise and witty, outstanding for its use of vibrant, poetic language and understated Southern dialect, as well as Mantella’s clear-eyed observations of race relations as human relations, a cast of unforgettable characters, an in-depth exploration of the ties that bind, and its creative perspective. My Sweet Vidalia is a rare, wonderful, and complex look at hope, strength, the unparalleled power of unconditional love, and a young mother’s refusal to give up.

“My Sweet Vidalia is a unique, enchanting read. Exquisite language, a cast of robust characters, and a solid and compelling  plot keeps readers captivated as Mantella straddles the thin line between poetry and prose, reality and ether, fragility and strength. With a deft and gentle hand, she navigates us through the travails of an impoverished young mother guided by her intrepid spirit child.”– Susan Crawford, Author of The Pocket Wife

Add to Goodreads badge

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

deborah-mantellaAbout Deborah Mantella

A transplant to the South, Deborah Mantella has lived and taught in various cities in the Northeast and the Midwest. Now a resident of Georgia she lives outside Atlanta with her husband. Mantella is a member of the Atlanta Writers Club, the Authors Guild, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. This is her first novel.



Connect with Deborah

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Deborah Mantella’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Monday, February 1st: Patricia’s Wisdom

Tuesday, February 2nd: Reading Reality

Wednesday, February 3rd: WV Stitcher

Thursday, February 4th: Books Without Any Pictures

Thursday, February 4th: FictionZeal

Tuesday, February 9th: Time 2 Read

Wednesday, February 10th: Lavish Bookshelf

Thursday, February 11th: Stranded in Chaos

Monday, February 15th: Kritter’s Ramblings

Monday, February 15th: All Roads Lead to the Kitchen

Tuesday, February 16th: Musings of a Bookish Kitty

Wednesday, February 17th: Dwell in Possibility

Thursday, February 18th: Mallory Heart Reviews

Monday, February 22nd: Kahakai Kitchen

Tuesday, February 23rd: Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews

Wednesday, February 24th: The Reading Cove Book Club


Leave a Reply

We see and read all comments, but we don't publish them. You can get ahold of us by leaving a comment or by emailing us at and