BERNICE MCFADDEN DAY!
BY BERNICE L. McFADDEN
Bernice L. McFadden’s beloved debut Sugar was hailed by critics across the country who praised her graceful voice and revolved at her talent for telling a complex story with insight and clarity. The New York Times called Sugar “Vivid.”
This remarkable book is the story of a young prostitute who comes to Bigelow, Arkansas to start a new life. Sugar moves next door to Pearl Taylor, who is still grieving for the daughter who was murdered fifteen years before. Over sweet potato pie an unlikely friendship begins, transforming both their lives - and the life of an entire community.MY REVIEW:
SUGAR by Bernice McFadden is a novel that rings true with its authenticity of the African American life in 1950s in America. Set in Bigelow, Arkansas, SUGAR is a story of love and loss, tragedy and triumph, friendship and forgiveness that revolves around the two main characters who play so well off of each other. With Bernice McFadden’s astonishing talent, the story of Sugar Lacey and Pearl Taylor comes to life through vivid descriptions and such powerful imagery and depth of feeling, that it is astounding to think that this was her first novel.
The book begins with a unequivocally serious depiction of the murder of Pearl Taylor’s daughter, Jude. This shocking opening makes the reader sit up and take notice from the start and will take on more meaning later in the book. Fast forward fifteen years and the story shifts to the story of Pearl and Sugar.
Sugar made her entrance into Bigelow complete with prostitute costumed long blonde wig and daring red dress. Having been left by her mother at a brothel as a child, she grew up in the only world she knew and the only life she felt worthy of. Secretly, Sugar wanted to be a songstress, a singer of love and hope, seduction and sadness. But she realistically thought of how difficult it would be to become a singer what with her background and as a young black girl in those times.
Sugar moves in next door to Pearl Taylor, a sixty-year-old woman who lives a simple life with her husband Joe; that is until Sugar arrives. Although the two women are so opposite, we find that after a shaky start, a perfect bonding takes place. Sugar reminds Pearl of her beloved Jude and can look past Sugar’s outer shell and appreciate her inner self. Pearl doesn’t pay attention to her neighbors, while Sugar pretends not to as they are all afraid she is there to steal their husbands away. Even Pearl’s husband is against the relationship he can’t understand. Pearl works hard to help Sugar become a good church goin’ woman. Unfortunately, some of the town still feel Sugar is just too much for them, even with Pearl’s backing, to convince. A person from Sugar’s past comes and although he is up against Pearl who is ready to fight him off, he is still a strong reminder to Sugar of where she came from and who she really thinks she is.
Watching to see if good can triumph over evil and allow Sugar to overcome her past that really was no fault of her own, readers will cheer and ache along with this character as she must make a decision about where the rest of her life is meant to be and where it will take her. With the kind of story and characters that you immediately become involved with, readers will not be sorry to meet Bernice McFadden through this, her first novel, SUGAR.
GIVEAWAY: PART TWO
THANKS TO BERNICE MCFADDEN
FOR THE TWO AUTOGRAPHED COPIES
OF EACH OF THESE AMAZING
BOOKS TO GIVE AWAY, SO TWO
WINNERS WILL WIN BOTH SUGAR
AND GLORIOUS !
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HOW TO ENTER
+1 ENTRY: COMMENT ON THE INFORMATION, OR REVIEW, FOR SUGAR ABOVE THAT YOU FIND WOULD ATTRACT YOU AND MAKE YOU WANT TO READ THIS BOOK
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6 PM, EST, MAY 10 !