Dear Elizabeth, It's early morning and I'm sitting here wondering where you are, hoping you're all right.
A fight, ended by a slap, sends Elizabeth out the door of her Baton Rouge home on the eve of her 15th birthday. Her mother, Laura, is left to fret and worry - and remember. Wracked with guilt as she awaits Liz's return, Laura begins a letter to her daughter, hoping to convey "everything I've always meant to tell you but never have."
In her painfully candid confession, Laura shares memories of her own troubled adolescence in rural Louisiana, growing up in an intensely conservative household. She recounts her relationship with a boy she loved despite her parents' disapproval, the fateful events that led to her being sent away to a strict Catholic boarding school, the personal tragedy brought upon her by the Vietnam War, and, finally, the meaning of the enigmatic tattoo below her right hip.
Absorbing and affirming, George Bishop's magnificent debut brilliantly captures a sense of time and place with a distinct and inviting voice. Letter to My Daughter is a heartwrenching novel of mothers, daughters, and the lessons we all learn when we come of age.
©2010 George Bishop, Jr. (P)2010 Tantor