Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Message In A Bottle

A woman’s distant family problems wash ashore

Of course I’m excited about this book. Martha Southgate and I worked together 25 years ago on a weekly paper I started in Cleveland. She was interested so much in writing and the arts, she was destined to move here. She’s been here quite a while now. This is her fourth novel. The first three got good praise. The first one won the Coretta Scott King award.

This one’s got Cleveland in it, and it’s got Woods Hole in it, a world away from Lake Erie’s shores. It’s about a woman from a black family with classic books on the shelves. It’s about alcohol and the distance it imposes. it’s about other ways we distance ourselves, too. It’s about the reasons. We read books to see what the reasons might be for how we are. Here’s a graceful, fearless attempt to show us some reasons.

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