Friday, November 27, 2020

Red at the Bone


Of the books chosen for my Literature/Discussion class this semester, which included, Normal People by Sally Rooney, Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively, Lily King’s Writers and Lovers and Parakeet by Marie-Helene Bertino, our instructor saved the best for last, the best being Jacqueline Woodson’s Red at the Bone.

In this class, I learned that there are two ways to tell a story: from the head or from the heart. Woodson’s story is about a fifteen-year-old girl who gives birth to a child she loves but cannot mother. It’s a story about a young woman who burns (and burning is a theme in this book) with a hunger for learning. It’s a story about a family of five, each giving their own point of view. From the Tulsa Oklahoma massacre to a death at the world trade center,  Red at the Bone is a story told with compassion and love. 

After I read this story, I listened to it on audible. Twice! I suggest that you listen to it too and that when you do, you will find it’s a story that will reach into your soul and stay there because after all, when it comes to love and loving, we are all just a little bit undone, a little bit raw, and a little bit red at the bone.

 My memoir, Dear Elvis, can be found at


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