Gal: A True Life

Front Cover
Harcourt Brace, 1994 - Biography & Autobiography - 275 pages
45 Reviews
Ruthie Mae Bolton was born January 6, 1961, in the Hungry Neck section of Charleston, South Carolina. At the time, her mother was thirteen; she has never known who her father was. Her mother was the wandering kind, so Ruthie Mae-nicknamed "Gal" by her stepgrandfather-was raised in her grandparents' home. One day Grandmama died as a result of a severe beating by her husband-it occured to no one to call this to the attention of the authorities-and Gal was left in the brutal hands of her granddaddy, who beat her unmercifully as well. Ruthie Mae began to steal things in school and she developed a stutter; she drank and smoked dope. But she stuck resolutely with her education and graduated from high school, which was likely her salvation, for today Ruthie Mae is happily married, with children and a fine job. At last she is at peace-with herself and even with the memory of her grandfather. It is nigh impossible to convey the astonishingly eloquent simplicity of Ruthie Mae's witnessing to her time. Here is an absolutely remarkable document, as touching as it is painful, as ageless as it is timely.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

Review: Gal: A True Life

User Review  - Angie Riddick - Goodreads

I enjoyed this book. read in two days. Ritchie life journey was full of ups and downs. Read full review

Review: Gal: A True Life

User Review  - Brendan Hoose - Goodreads

This book is a true inspiration that teaches us about how scars can heal but not until a long tiem Read full review


Section 1
Section 2
Section 3

13 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1994)

Ruthie M. Bolton is a writer and oral historian. The name is the pseudonym of an African American writer born on January 6, 1961 in Charleston, South Carolina. Bolton graduated from high school despite a difficult childhood. She wrote the details of her life of abuse and neglect and showed it to the novelist, Josephine Humphreys. Humphreys suggested that Bolton tell her story as oral history and helped by transcribing the tapes and writing the introduction to the finished book.

Bibliographic information