“Pearson delivers a poignant debut that explores the faith of one African American family. . . . The writing is strong, and the story is engaging, and readers will be pleased to discover a new voice in Southern inspirational fiction.” —Booklist
Christy Award winner!
To hear Beatrice Agnew tell it, she entered the world with her mouth tightly shut. Just because she finds out she’s dying doesn’t mean she can’t keep it that way. If any of her children have questions about their daddy and the choices she made after he abandoned them, they’d best take it up with Jesus. There’s no room in Granny B’s house for regrets or hand-holding. Or so she thinks.
Her granddaughter, Evelyn Lester, shows up on Beatrice’s doorstep anyway, burdened with her own secret baggage. Determined to help her Granny B mend fences with her far-flung brood, Evelyn turns her grandmother’s heart and home inside out. Evelyn’s meddling uncovers a tucked-away box of old letters, forcing the two women to wrestle with their past and present pain as they confront the truth Beatrice has worked a lifetime to hide.
Pearson's excellent debut explores forgiveness and the burden of secrets. When Evelyn finds out she's pregnant, she tries to stick it out with her husband, Kevin, instead of entertaining her fantasies of leaving him. After Kevin goes abroad for work, Evelyn finds out that her grandmother, Granny B, is dying from leukemia. Evelyn and her mother decide to make sure that Granny B is getting the best treatment possible, but Evelyn soon discovers that it's hard to change the ways of someone who is not afraid of dying. Evelyn decides to stick around as Granny B receives treatment, and while there, they sift through a box of old letters, uncovering facets of their history as well as long-buried secrets. Through sharing experiences and their views on faith and forgiveness, both women begin to see each other in a different light. Evelyn continues to throw Granny B's life and routine into upheaval as she becomes determined to reconnect Granny B with her children, whom she rarely sees, but reconnecting means that Granny B will have to confront her past mistakes. In turn, helping Granny B repair her relationships and come to terms with the past gives Evelyn the strength to work on her own family. Pearson's saga is enjoyable and uncomfortable, but also funny and persistent in the way that only family can be.