Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Every Bone a Prayer

Every Bone a Prayer by Ashley Blooms
Sourcebooks: 8/4/20
review copy; 352 pages

Every Bone a Prayer by Ashley Blooms is a recommended novel full of magic realism about a young girl who is sexually abused. Misty, ten, her sister Penny, and her mom live in a trailer in an Appalachian Mountain holler. Her parents have separated. Misty is connected to everything that lives around her and loves to go to the creek to speak to every living thing there, but especially to the crawdads. When her neighbor William starts doing some hurtful things to her in the barn, she doesn't know how to handle it or what to do about it. And then there are the strange glass-like statues growing up out of the ground at the neighbors across the road.

This is a beautifully written descriptive novel, but it is also a heartbreaking coming-of-age novel. The novel came from a very emotional, personal place from the author and that shows in the raw emotions present in the raw undercurrents of fear and horror. In the end Misty is a survivor. While I admire many qualities in the writing and emotions of the narrative, I'm the odd reviewer who didn't love Every Bone a Prayer. The set up for the actual novel is very slow and lengthy. Additionally the magic, magic realism, animism, etc. distracted from the important message within the novel. She almost seems to be undergoing a dissociative state, but in her case it is a real separation from her body. 

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Sourcebooks.

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