- I honestly was expecting something very different when I picked up this book (mostly, I had been mistaking it for being another title by the same name, due to it being an e-ARC!)
Summary from GoodReads:
In the autumn of 1941, Amelia J. McGee, a young woman of Cherokee and Scotch-Irish descent, and an outspoken pamphleteer for the NAACP, hastily sends her daughter, Ella, alone on a bus home to Georgia in the middle of the night—a desperate measure that proves calamitous when the child encounters two drifters and is left for dead on the side of the road.
Ella awakens in the homestead of Willie Mae Cotton, a wise root doctor and former slave, and her partner, Mary-Mary Freeborn, tucked deep in the Takatoka Forest. As Ella heals, the secrets of her lineage are revealed.
I am not going to lie, this book took some getting used to. What it reminded me of is a great bit ball of string, all knotted up, and trying to get it all into one smooth string, you have to follow the knots and work them slowly, one by one.
Glow begins with the story of Mia and Ella – Mia being the teenage mother of Ella, but Ella believing her grandmother is really her mother. There is racial tensions, being as this is set in Georgia in the mid-40′s, and the switching back and forth between perspectives makes things a bit tiring.
But then something happens around mid-way through the book. The knots begin to take on lives of their own, and the characters meander through each others lives making the transition between characters and times a bit more easy to stand.
Glow is a fascinating look at not only the lives of characters of mixed race (Native American and African American feature prominently in this book), but also a very interesting look at the publications of the Census Bureau during the various times in the novel. Glow is a tearjerker – I was weeping and angry at the injustice that was oh so real and happening to people within its pages, and by the time I had closed the book, I knew I’d experienced something that will haunt me into the future.
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