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Redemption Song - Review ( *PIC*

Editorial Reviews

Miss Cozy Brown, proprietor of a bookstore that specializes in rare and hard-to-find African American titles, goes to sleep one night knowing that something magical is about to happen. She finds herself drawn again to the yellowed manuscript that her grandmother bequeathed to her, Children of Grace, a slave narrative by a woman healer who died long before abolition.

Despite its unsparing accounts of cruelty and abuse, hope shimmers from its pages, and the book can only be described as a love story with prophetic overtones, much like Redemption Song. It closes with the promise that slavery will end--the author of the manuscript, Iona, reads the future in the stars--but that true freedom will only come later. The next morning, as Miss Cozy suspected, two strangers are waiting for Black Images to open.

They both need a special book, something life-transforming, and their hands fall at the same time on Children of Grace. Miss Cozy glances up as the couple approaches the counter. She "watched these two, as she'd watched so many others. She knew that they had no idea how their lives were going to be affected. Other folks had come to her shop thinking that they had been led to the bookstore because of their own intuition. But she knew better.

This was her purpose, her calling: to help others unfold the chapters of their lives by reading between someone else's lines."
Some of what happens to Fina and Ross when Miss Cozy takes them under her wing will not surprise readers. But as they leaf through Children of Grace together, drawing strength from the story, they uncover Iona's "Recipe of Life," with its powerful and remarkably personal message.

In her fictional debut, Bertice Berry has written a modern-day fairy tale and a hymn of praise to literature's redemptive power. --Regina Marler

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Redemption Song - Review ( *PIC*
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18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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