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A Sunday in June    by Phyllis Alesia Perry Amazon.com order for
Sunday in June
by Phyllis Alesia Perry
Order:  USA  Can
Hyperion, 2004 (2004)
Hardcover
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

A Sunday in June is a compelling novel, filled with anger and emotional pain - a hard book to read, and a very hard one to put down. The three Mobley sisters, in the south of Alabama in 1915, have the gift of second sight. Some might call it the curse of second sight.

Grace, Eva, and Mary Nell, would all agree that it is a curse. Grace seems to suffer hers alone feeling the travails her grandmother Ayo (Bessie was her slave name) went through as a slave. Eva and Mary Nell share their dreams and visions of coming horrors simultaneously. These are burdens the three try to conceal from the world in general and from their parents, Joy and Frank, in particular.

Phyllis Alesia Perry has a real winner with this second novel her first, Stigmata, won high praise from critics and her peers. The three sisters are wonderfully characterized; the reader can feel their inner anger and sympathize with the wrongs that they suffer. The writing, although depicting the bad times these women face, is lyrical.

Perry has chosen just the right words, from all those available to her, to tell their story. At one point, Eva is washing, '... and she'd very slowly wipe the moisture from her face with the frayed white wash rag, reminding her features, her eyes, her nose, cheeks, mouth, that they were unhappy'. Perry's marvelous use of language enhances an already excellent novel.

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