Friday, March 22, 2024

DYSFUNCTION JUNCTION by Robin W. Pearson, Reviewed by Rebecca Maney

"Don't y'all get tired of all this rigamarole about what a terrible mother we had?"

Rehashing their convoluted childhood was exhausting, especially for Frances Mae, the oldest of the three Winters girls, now the mother of four, who "was quite weary of serving as the point of intersection for their two lines; Charlotte and Annabelle always seemed to be headed in opposite, equally dysfunctional, directions". The thing was, after years apart they were back together again, sort of, and the sweet woman who had "mothered" them far more than their biological namesake was asking them to make a decision that would affect their lives going forward, if they could stop arguing long enough to have an honest conversation about it.

Splitting her delivery between "then" and "now", the author takes her readers along on a painful journey through the childhood memories of three young women who had managed to survive their childhood, but who each carried some version of emotional scars, bitter feelings, and perhaps slightly skewed recollections of what had actually happened. How could they love when they had never felt loved? How could they remain in one place when all they had wanted to do was run away? How could God . . . "use all the hardship, all the lack, all the pain . . . for our good".

"He remains our Abba Father even when our earthly fathers and mothers abandon us, die, move away, or plain don't care."

A very thoughtful, inspirational reminder that the journey forward can look totally different from the tangled path we must often leave behind.
*I purchased this book and was under no obligation to provide a positive review. 3.5 stars

BackCover Blurb:
When three women receive an unexpected phone call that leaves them reeling, they have no other choice but to reckon with a lifetime of memories they’ve long tried to bury. Only in facing the past will they find their path forward.

Frances Mae Livingston’s firm grip of her family’s destructive history makes her hold her husband and four children even closer. But she’s losing bits of herself while proving to everybody and her mama that she’s enough. There’s no way she’ll repeat her mama’s mistakes, even if it kills her.

Annabelle McMillan didn’t have trouble kicking the Eastern North Carolina dust off her feet. The tough part was replanting herself in familiar soil. Now she’s blending her old life with her new husband, stepson, and unborn child. And battling old memories of abandonment and new fears of rejection.

Dr. Charlotte Winters has built a career around helping others sort through their emotional baggage. She’s also spent a lifetime refusing to unpack her own. So what if Charlotte doesn’t recall all that her mama did to her and what her daddy didn't do for her? Her only mission is to help others help themselves…until the women from her past and the man in her future undo her well-sewn life.

At the junction of healed and hurting, broken and whole, and past and present, three women wrestle with their inability to forgive and forget in this riveting Southern family drama about sisterhood from award-winning author Robin W. Pearson.

-Southern family saga
-Discussion questions for book groups
-For fans of Black authors like Patricia Raybon, Toni Shiloh, and Brit Bennett

Tyndale House Publishing, February, 2024
Available in digital ebook, paperback, hardcover, and audiobook:



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