Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Sing, unburied, sing

Sing, unburied, sing / Jesmyn Ward, read by Kelvin Harrison, Jr., Rutina Wesley & Chris Chalk, 289 pgs.

Jojo is 13 and his sister Kayla 3.  They live with their grandparents and mother.  Their father is in prison.  The grandparents are the true parents as their mother Leonie has a drug problem and isn't made of mother material.  The family matriarch is on her deathbed, beaten down by cancer.  Pop is holding down the fort, raising the children and recalling his own time in prison when his almost son-in-law is released from the same place he served time.  Leonie decides to take the kids for the release date to see the father they barely know.  The narration for this book bounces between Jojo, Leonie and Richie, a ghost who haunts Pop mentally but is seen by and communicates with Jojo.  The stories of each are mostly heart breaking and occasionally hopeful. Each is treated with extreme respect by the author who has crafted an unforgettable book. I listened to the audio that is expertly narrated by the small cast listed above.  I think the audio version packs a bigger emotional punch which may not be a good thing for everyone.

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