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The Summer of Grace

The new book from Karen Jones

The  Summer of Grace

Ten-year-old Gracie sits on the backyard picnic table hugging Brown Hound, the dog’s fur soaking up her tears. It’s early summer 1951 and her daddy is sending them to her grandmother for a while. They have gotten to be too much for her high-strung mother to handle.

On the North Carolina family farm, Gracie and Brown Hound meet the family. Great Granny Jane smokes a pipe and is fast with her cane, Miss Emily proves to be loving but firm, and Jane, her cousin of the same age, has a swashbuckler’s heart.

It is wild and heady freedom, far from her mother’s scorn and her father’s indifference. The girls hunt through ancient cemeteries, sneak visits to the conjure woman, team up against the town gossips, fight, make up, and sleep in the same bed, tangled like puppies. 

  But there is also Marcell, the solitary woman who keeps the house. Her dark skin shines in contrast to her eyes, their light dimmed by memories and secrets. Her history is mysteriously entwined with the family and for some inexplicable reason she hates dogs. Now she has Brown Hound in her sights. Gracie and Jane must fix this before the dog gets sent away. 

  Can the girls heal old wounds, or could their stubborn determination make matters worse? Are Marcel’s secrets tied to the injustice and bigotry of the past, and will the girls push through present-day prejudices to find out? Should the girls expose the truth of that one missing grave? And what timeworn promise, still steeped in segregation, will reveal the families’ hidden past?   

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Meet the Author: Karen Jones

Join Karen as she discusses her new novel, The Summer of Grace. Get insights into publishing & learn more about what it takes to write your own book. Thanks to the Virginia Beach Public Library for the interview!

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