Read this next: Tayari Jones, Silver Sparrow

First of all, I am glad you liked Emily Alone. That is good to hear. Now, the one to read is Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones. The book is a pitcher plant. You just fall right into it, right from the beginning, and you never get a chance to escape. After a while, you dissolve. OK — block that metaphor — but it’s nice to see a literary work that consumes you like this. One other thing — I like the way it hauls the problems that drive the story into the light, but it doesn’t try to solve them all like some cheesy ABC After School Special. It does what a good story should do — shines a light on human lives and situations, and when the book ends, the characters go on living without your help. In several instances, I wanted to intervene — help these people out — and then I remembered that she made it up.

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