So ran the response of one reader of the book she'd just finished, Stranger to the Truth (published last fall by AuthorHouse), a reader who is also a friend to the daughter of the book's author, Memphian Lisa C. Hickman. As Hickman wrote of that response in a recent email: "Her comment is remarkably intuitive of how I often felt when I was working on this."
"This" is the true story of Noura Jackson and the stabbing death in 2005 in East Memphis of her mother, Jennifer. Reconstructing their lives and the events leading up to and following Jennifer Jackson's murder was a lesson in perseverance. For Hickman, it meant visiting the courtroom daily during Noura's trial. It meant revisiting the scene of the crime. It meant trying to reconcile conflicting testimony. And, most importantly, it meant uncovering the complicated relationship between a mother and teen-age daughter.
The end result of Hickman's research and reporting has, however, had its brighter side. According to the author:
"No, I haven't heard from any of Noura's family members. But overall, the response has been positive. Most people tell me they finished the book in one or two days. Considering my long involvement with the subject and the writing, that seems almost unfair. Still, I think it's a terrific compliment. It's let me know there is light at the end of a lengthy, solitary process."
Hickman won't be alone the next few days and in connection with her book. She will be discussing Stranger to the Truth with Marybeth Conley and Alex Coleman when she appears on WREG NewsChannel 3's Live at 9 on Thursday, January 16th, at 9 a.m. And Hickman will be signing Stranger to the Truth at The Booksellers at Laurelwood on Saturday, January 18th, from 2 to 3 p.m. — a book store that just happens to be not far from the neighborhood once home to Noura and Jennifer Jackson. •
For the Flyer's review of Stranger to the Truth, go here. For more on Lisa C. Hickman and her book, go to the author's website at strangertothetruth.com.