In sparsely populated George County, Mississippi, lies Chalktown - a small village of folks who only communicate through the chalkboards hanging from their front porches. Down the road from this bizarre place lives the Sheehand family: sixteen-year-old Hezekiah, his reckless sister Arena, his mentally disabled brother Yellababy, and their disaffected and often cruel mother Susan Blair, whose husband has abandoned the family. One day Hez sets out for Chalktown with Yellababy strapped to his back. Hez is determined to plumb Chalktown's mysteries while his family confronts a tragedy that will pave the way for a hopeful future.
Armed with a gothic and spiritual sensibility reminiscent of Flannery O'Connor, Melinda Haynes weaves her characters' lives and stories into an unforgettable tapestry of sorrow and salvation.
Melinda Haynes' Mother of Pearl was an unexpected sensation, chosen for Oprah's book club and selling more than half a million copies in hardcover. Now with the same stunning language, Haynes returns to the country she knows so well - the backwoods South of the 1960's - to tell the story of a mysterious town and its inhabitants, each with their own affections and joys, each with their own secrets.