Jesmyn Ward, Sing, Unburied, Sing
Ward won the National Book Award for this haunting novel whose troubled souls include 13-year-old JoJo, who is at a crucial crossroads. His growing awareness of mortality and injustice are mixed with love for his grandparents Pop and Mam and his three-year-old sister Kayla. Pop shares memories of Parchman, the notorious Mississippi prison farm where he once did time, and teaches JoJo to live with dignity. JoJo’s mother Leonie takes both kids and her friend Misty on a bizarre road to pick up her white boyfriend Michael, who is being released from Parchman after three years. Hovering nearby: the ghost of a boy named Richie who died at Parchman 60 years ago. Ward unearths layers of history in gorgeous textured language, ending with an unearthly chord.
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