Midnight Without a Moon by Linda Williams Jackson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Jackson skillfully weaves two tales, one about the historical tragic moment in the civil right movement: the death of Emmett Till and then a fiction plotline with Rose Carter Lee struggling to find her own identity in the plantation in Stillwater, Mississippi that she lives in with her family under the Jim Crow's laws.
This book is so damn hard to describe. If I had to though, I would say that it's expansive, and also alters your perspective on the death of Emmett Till. Believe or not, my newly acquired habit of not reading the synopsis proved to kind of be a downfall to my enjoyment of this book(yes, it's my fault.) I understood that this was historical fiction, but because I didn't research further I was quite disoriented at what is happening in this story. And now I regret that, but the blame to place is honestly all mine.
Moving on, for a debut novel the writing was stunningly immersive. Honestly, I could not tear my eyes away from the story; in fact I read it all in one sitting. I could deeply connect with Rose, the main character who feels insecure and unworthy and wants to find herself and her freedom. In my opinion, the core of this story is what it means to be a black girl living in the Deep South during the 50s. But one may argue, as the synopsis says that it's about how a murder can shake up and change someone's lives. Whether or not I personally understood the author's intent, I still really enjoyed this based on my own interpretation.
So many emotions ran through my heart from horrifying to bold. This book is definitively worth picking up and reading, because there's nothing like trying to learn something new, something from a different experience. I can't wait for the sequel!
*This interview was enlightening from NPR. It's around 6 minutes long and the author eloquently talks about her motivations and explains the various character roles: http://www.npr.org/2017/01/01/5077601... *
**Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.**
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