Paige has only a few vivid memories of her mother, who abandoned her at five years old. Now, having left her father behind in Chicago for dreams of art school and marriage to an ambitious young doctor, she finds herself with a child of her own. But her mother's absence and shameful memories of her past force her to doubt whether she could ever be capable of bringing joy and meaning into the life of her child, gifts her own mother never gave.
Harvesting the Heart is written with astonishing clarity and evocative detail, convincing in its depiction of emotional pain, love, and vulnerability, and recalls the writing of Alice Hoffman and Kristin Hannah. Out of Paige's struggle to find wholeness, Jodi Picoult crafts an absorbing novel peopled by richly drawn characters, and explores motherhood with a power and depth only she is capable of.
“A brilliant, moving examination of motherhood, brimming with detail and emotion.” —Richmond Times-Dispatch
“Jodi Picoult explores the fragile ground of ambivalent motherhood in her lush second novel. This story belongs to… the lucky reader.” —The New York Times Book Review
On the eve of his execution, eighteen year old Willie Jones sits in his cell in New Iberia awaiting his end. Across the state, a truck driven by a convict and his keeper carries the executioner’s chair closer. On a nearby highway, Willie’s father Frank lugs a gravestone on the back of his fading, old mule. In his office the DA who prosecuted Willie reckons with his sentencing, while at their gas station at the crossroads outside of town, married couple Ora and Dale grapple with their grief and their secrets.
As various members of the township consider and reflect on what Willie’s execution means, an intricately layered and complex portrait of a Jim Crow era Southern community emerges. Moving from voice to voice, Winthrop elegantly brings to stark light the story of a town, its people, and its injustices. The Mercy Seat is a brutally incisive and tender novel from one of our most acute literary observers.
It ain't easy being biracial and a trust fund baby, but blue-eyed Jesse Morgan is determined to just be herself at an eastern college—where no one will know who or what she is...unless she chooses to tell them. What Jesse doesn't yet realize is that "no past" doesn't equal "no problems."
High-powered executive Thea Morgan is marrying Rev. Xavier Thornton—the former athlete and successful black businessman-turned-pastor, a man she first fell in love with at sixteen. A fair-skinned black woman who cracked the glass ceiling in the Texas oil business, Thea assumes her identity difficulties are behind her. She hasn't yet met Xavier's new congregation in a down-on-its-luck Arkansas town...nor Mrs. Hattie Patterson—the matriarch of St. Hurricane Church who has fixed opinions about how a minister's wife should behave. Will Thea lose her struggles to win over Xavier's congregation, people who just don't understand her big-city ways? It will take every bit of her humor, business acumen, and just plain hard-loving to deal with her crisis of faith and the sinking feeling that, just maybe, love can't conquer all.
Like mother, like daughter, Thea and Jesse discover that sometimes to get what you need most you to have to put everything, even love, on the line.