The novel is built around an arduous car tripan odysseya black woman and her two children drive to a prison to pick up their white father. Ward cleverly uses that itinerant structure to move this family across the land while keeping them pressed together, hot and irritated. The trip reflects the realities of being black and poor in the rural South, and the journey in Mississippi from past to present. And while the characters face the consequences of a complicated legacy from slavery to mass incarceration, they are also a family with an incredible, tender, transformative love for each other.
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