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Miss Hazel and the Rosa Parks League
by Jonathan Odell


Overview - Miss Hazel and the Rosa Parks League is a brilliant reimagining and republication of Jonathan Odell s debut novel, The View from Delphi. Set in pre-Civil Rights Mississippi, and inspired by his Mississippi childhood, Odell tells the story of two young mothers, Hazel and Vida one wealthy and white and the other poor and black who have only two things in common: the devastating loss of their children, and a deep and abiding loathing for one another.  Read more...

 
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More About Miss Hazel and the Rosa Parks League by Jonathan Odell
 
 
 
Overview
Miss Hazel and the Rosa Parks League is a brilliant reimagining and republication of Jonathan Odell s debut novel, The View from Delphi. Set in pre-Civil Rights Mississippi, and inspired by his Mississippi childhood, Odell tells the story of two young mothers, Hazel and Vida one wealthy and white and the other poor and black who have only two things in common: the devastating loss of their children, and a deep and abiding loathing for one another. Embittered and distrusting, Vida is harassed by Delphi s racist sheriff and haunted by the son she lost to the world. Hazel, too, has lost a son and can t keep a grip on her fractured life. After drunkenly crashing her car into a manger scene while gunning for the baby Jesus, Hazel is sedated and bed-ridden. Hazel s husband hires Vida to keep tabs on his unpredictable wife and to care for his sole surviving son. Forced to spend time together with no one else to rely on, the two women find they have more in common than they thought, and together they turn the town on its head. It is the story of a town, a people, and a culture on the verge of a great change that begins with small things, like unexpected friendship."

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781940210049
  • ISBN-10: 1940210046
  • Publisher: Maiden Lane Press
  • Publish Date: February 2015
  • Page Count: 460


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > General
Books > Fiction > Historical - General

 
BookPage Reviews

Friendship in a time of change

Pre-Civil Rights Mississippi was a place where issues of race and class weighted down air already heavy with humidity. Jonathan Odell takes this complicated setting and throws two young mothers from widely different worlds together.

Hazel, a wealthy white woman, and Vida, a poor black woman, are at first only joined by the devastating loss of their children—and their enmity for one another. Vida is frequently harassed by the racist local sheriff, which, combined with the loss of her son, has made her bitter and mistrustful. When Hazel’s husband hires Vida to take care of Hazel after a drunken car crash, close proximity and lack of other companionship force Vida and Hazel to learn to get along. The two team up to turn their town of Delphi, Mississippi, on its head, and watch as change takes place—in their city, their state, their nation and their culture.

This is the third novel from Mississippi native Odell (The Healing), and it draws from his own experience. Miss Hazel and the Rosa Parks League is quintessentially Southern in its frank discussions of friendship, marriage, family, feminism, grief and redemption.

 

This article was originally published in the February 2015 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews