07. March 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Claudia, Fiction

Mudbound by Hillary Jordan, 328 pages, read by Claudia, on 02/19/2013

Mudbound is a modern classic in my estimation.  It currently resides in my top ten list, and Jordan is my new one-to-watch favorite author.  I am already trying to find out when her next book will be published!     Mudbound was Jordan’s 2006 debut novel  and it was honored with the Bellwether prize for fiction.  The book is about prejudice. The year is 1946 and Laura McAllan is struggling to raise her children on her husband’s muddy Mississippi Delta farm., a place she dislikes from the outset and grows to hate.   In the midst of the family’s farm struggles, two young men return from the war to work the land. Jamie McAllan, Laura’s brother-in-law, who is everything her husband is not—-charming, handsome, and haunted by his memories of combat. Ronsel Jackson, eldest son of the black sharecroppers who live on the McAllan farm, who has come home a war hero. But no matter his bravery in defense of his country, he is still considered less than a man in the Jim Crow South. It is the unlikely friendship of these brothers-in-arms that drives this powerful novel to its  heartbreaking conclusion. The men and women of each family relate their versions of events and we are drawn into their lives as they become players in a tragedy we know was lived out by so many others years ago.

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