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Forgiveness Road Hardcover – 26 Feb 2019
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Praise for The Last Suppers
"In this novel of compassion, readers will find a humanizing light in a normally dark place."
"The Last Suppers held me riveted from the first page to the last, a gorgeous novel that finds beauty in the most unlikely of places. This story has the social conscience of The Help, the unflinching honesty of The Shawshank Redemption, and a wholly original heroine whose humanity will touch your heart as she cooks her way to redemption."
--Susan Wiggs, #1 New York Times bestselling author
--Library Journal (Starred Review) "A taut page-turner . . . had me in its grips to the shocking end of a well-crafted,
--Anna Jean Mayhew, author of The Dry Grass of August "A serious book, beautifully written . . . compelling and very very real."
--The New York Journal of Books "Filled with heart and reverent solemnity, despair and hope, Mandy Mikulencak's writing is a sensitive, thoughtful narrative about finding freedom beyond the boundaries of what we believe of ourselves and of our past. With captivating characters, a unique premise, and set in sultry Louisiana, this story is as rich and enticing as the last suppers prepared, one you will want to linger over until the very last page."
--Donna Everhart, author of The Education of Dixie Dupree "Unrestrained in its honesty, this is one novel that will keep you thinking long after the last page is read."
--Historical Novels Society
About the Author
Mandy Mikulencak has been a writer her entire working life. First, as a journalist then as an editor and PR specialist for two national nonprofits and a United Nations agency. Today she lives in the mountains of Southwest Colorado with her husband. Readers can visit her website at www.mandymikulencak.com.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Her grandmother’s lawyer, however, plans to plead insanity. Cissy has had some mental quirks for a number of years: she makes endless lists and counts everything. She’s developed a form of OCD that allows her to believe she has some control over her life. This lands her in a mental hospital rather than in jail, where she reads whatever is available and plays chess with God, talking out loud to Her. But then her grandmother decides Cissy shouldn’t be punished at all for ridding the world of her son-in-law, and springs her for a road trip.
There are problems, of course. Janelle knows not to use credit cards or checks, so they are limited to what cash she had on hand. And Janelle is ill. This may cut short their bid for freedom.
There is a lot of things going on in this book; the cold relationship between Janelle and Caroline, the relationship between Janelle and her childhood best friend who is now her housekeeper- and refuses to call Janelle anything but ‘Ma’am’, the relationship of Caroline and Cissy that keeps Caroline from believing Cissy at first, the odd short of friendship between Cissy and a fellow patient at the asylum, the relationship that develops between Cissy and a waitress at the motel/restaurant they stop at for a while, and the relationship between said waitress and her boyfriend. But despite all that I liked about the book, I felt there was something odd about how fast Cissy got over things. She’s been abused all her life, she kills her father, her mother turns against her, and other crushing things happen to her later in the book. Yet she is okay… Her OCD protects her from what her father does to her, but it’s no protection against the rest, at least not that I can tell. Still, a very engaging book. Four and a half stars.
What an interesting book! The story is fascinating and the book just draws the reader in.
Cissy is a much misunderstood sixteen-year old girl. She talks to God. She counts things. Her very strict mother thinks there is something wrong with Cissy; she thinks her odd.
One day Cissy commits an irrevocable deed to protect her younger sisters. For this her mother hates her with all her being. But her maternal grandmother Janelle loves Cissy and tries very hard to protect her.
What follows is Cissy and Janelle’s journey to healing. For Janelle, it is an opportunity to open herself to the love of her granddaughter, something she couldn’t always give Caroline, Cissy’s mother. For Cissy, it is a chance to heal and learn about herself and the world around her.
This book is well written and plotted. It reads rather quickly and smoothly. I liked Cissy and her quirks, although it is easy to see why some people would think her strange. I really liked Janelle and her strength of character. Caroline, not so much. She thought more of her husband than of Cissy and flatly didn’t believe Cissy’s story. I know that this is not an uncommon occurrence in such situations, but the assumption that the child is lying still really frosts my preserves.
This is at once both a tragic and heartwarming story. I strongly recommend it for anyone who likes books about the relationships between generations and women both strong and those more tentative.
I want to thank NetGalley and Kensington Books for forwarding to me a copy of this very good book for me to read, enjoy and review.