The publishing house Bywater Books has added Cape Charles novelist Sheri Reynolds to its roster of authors. Reynolds, who returns to fiction writing after a decade focused on teaching, will publish her newest novel, The Tender Grave through Bywater Books this month.
Sheri is the author of the seven novels and the full-length play, Orabelle’s Wheelbarrow. She teaches creative writing and literature at Old Dominion University, where she serves as its Department Chair of English and is the Ruth and Perry Morgan Endowed Chair of Southern Literature.
Sherri’s novel, The Rapture of Canaan, appeared as an Oprah Book Club selection and was on the New York Times list of #1 bestsellers.
The Tender Grave is a story of two estranged sisters who find their unlikely way toward forgiveness—and each other—after a repugnant and disturbing set of circumstances.
At age 17, Dori participates in a hate crime against a gay boy from her school and runs away to escape prosecution—and her own harrowing childhood. In her pocket, she carries the address of an older, half-sister she’s never met. She has no idea that her sister, Teresa, is married to another woman, or that Teresa and Jen have tried and failed repeatedly to start their own family. When Dori and Teresa finally meet, they’re forced to confront that, while they don’t like or understand one another, they are inextricably bound in ways that transcend their differences. Together, the sisters discover that the shifting currents of family and connection can sometimes run deeper than the prevailing tides of abandonment and estrangement.
Here’s what the industry has to say:
In The Tender Grave, Reynolds weaves complex themes of parenting, forgiveness, guilt, and accountability into a lyrical and lushly woven tapestry that chronicles our enduring search for heart, home, and healing.
“Reynolds is a wonderful storyteller and master of pastoral imagery.” —The New York Times Book Review
“Sheri Reynolds is an essential voice from the American South—rich, haunting, courageous, big, and true.”
—Lee Smith, author of Fair and Tender Ladies
“I read everything that Sheri Reynolds writes with wonder and passion and a recognition of the way she speaks to and about my people—and this novel is cause for all of us to rejoice.”
—Dorothy Allison, author of Bastard Out of Carolina