Mother's Day is right around the corner, and I know how difficult it can be to find just the right gift for the special women in your life. I've got at least one present covered for you: Bren McClain's much-praised One Good Mama Bone.
The novel won a starred review from Booklist, it is an Okra Pick from the Southern Independent Booksellers Association, it's a Pulpwood Queen book club pick for May 2017, and it's won glowing reviews from print and web venues.
Before I tell you more about One Good Mama Bone, I want to share the book's opening paragraphs. I think they pull you right in:
One night, deep into it, when sounds are prone to carry, a baby boy lies crying on Sarah Creamer's kitchen table. He is minutes old, still wet with his mother's blood, and hungry for his mother's milk.Set mostly in the 1950s, One Good Mama Bone, is the story of a South Carolina woman who must find her seemingly absent maternal instincts so she can take care of and nurture a young boy who is need of a home. When Sarah decides her son, Emerson, could raise a steer for auction as part of the 4-H program, their lives slowly turn, as Sarah learns how to be a better parent from observing the steer's mother, and Emerson makes a friend of another 4-H-er. Life in the rural South, however, is never that easy or that simple.
But she does not hear his cries. She is no longer there.
Only Sarah. Only Sarah remains. Her body bent over his, her hands rummaging the wooden planks for a towel still white enough to wrap him in. Blood is everywhere, puddled up as if there had been a hard rain. The smell of it saturates the eighty-one-degree air, pushes aside the dry tang of bleach, and fills the heat with the moistness of a long-shuttered earth, now free.
The baby's cries penetrate Sarah's bosom and bounce around its emptiness.
Her hands are shaking.
McClain explores themes of parenthood, class differences, marriage, rural life, and poverty. The novel has been described as having Southern Gothic elements (Washington Independent Review of Books) and many reviewers have commented on the complexity of the story, and beauty of McClain's writing. Bonus: The foreword is written by Mary Alice Monroe.
Thanks to the author, publisher, and publicist, I am able to offer one of my readers a copy of Bren McClain's One Good Mama Bone. Although I can't promise you'll get the book in time for Mother's Day, I can promise it will make a great gift for your mother or another woman you'd like to honor this year. All you have to do to be entered for a chance to win is to have a USA mailing address and fill out the following form. I'll pick a winner on May 10 using a random number generator. Once the winner has been confirmed and I've passed the address along to the publicist, I'll erase all personal information from my computer. Good luck!