What’s Ginny reading next? Well, if you really want to know…
I have two selections on the docket this week. The first is the novel called The Swimmers by Chloe Lane. It’s a dramedy centered around a young woman returning to her family home for a short visit to see her terminally ill mother and her highly eccentric aunt and uncle (a family of former competitive swimmers, hence the title.) The main character, Erin, initially views this visit as a respite from the drama she’s experiencing in her professional and romantic life. However, immediately upon her arrival, she is informed that her mother has decided to end her own life in a few days’ time. And Erin has been given the daunting task of fulfilling her mother’s final wishes. Doesn’t strike one as story laced with humor, does it? But from what I’ve read thus far, comedy can be found in unexpected places. Like in dolphin figurine collections and kitchens with temperamental refrigerators.
Life is strange and complicated. Especially, when you’re preparing for death.
The second selection is the audio version of Black Girls Must Die Exhausted (A Novel For Grown Ups) by Jayne Allen. This book has been on my TBR list for a while, and I’m excited that I have finally made my way around to it. It tells the story of Tabitha Walker, a woman who seems to have all of her ducks in a row. She is a successful local news reporter. She’s in a steady relationship. And she’s preparing to put a down payment on her first house. But navigating this complex world can be taxing, especially for a black woman. Having to pay vigilant attention to the way in which you present yourself; in how you look and the volume at which you speak. The need to constantly prove yourself in professional settings; working that much harder to show beyond a doubt you deserve to inhabit that space. Add to this, the dangers of just…being, where a routine traffic stop can inspire very real fears and anxieties.
The pressures of life can be overwhelming. And unfortunately, for Tabitha this will be reaffirmed when she receives an unexpected diagnosis from her doctor. With the window for having a biological child quickly closing, Tabitha must make some hard decisions. She will explore the options available to her through modern medicine, and turn to her best friends and her very wise grandmother, for the emotional support she so desperately needs.
So, there you have it. Two novels about young women at pivotal moments in their lives.
I’ve always been drawn to stories about strong women. I find them to be inspiring. And in the case of these two selections, there is also a nod to the strong connections that women create with each other. There’s a certain type of support, guidance, and love that is unique to these relationships, and it’s a wonderful foundation for great storytelling.
I look forward to seeing how these two novels play out.