As a huge fan of Margaret Mitchell's " Gone With The Wind", I was excited to begin reading "Ruth's" personal story. I did enjoy this book, but the first 20% or so was somewhat convoluted and introduced so many characters while skipping back and forth amongst their storylines, that I found it a bit hard to keep up with. This improved as I got further into the book. I also was expecting Ruth to more closely resemble the personality of and the charachter traits of the "Mammy" character as depicted by Margaret Mitchell. This book definitely does not romanticize life in the Old South( as much of pre-war "Gone With The Wind" does), but is more insightful into the personal losses and tragedies experienced by blacks during this period in history.