In this Book

summary

From the critically acclaimed, award-winning author of Blackberries, Blackberries and Water Street comes an astonishing new novel. A lyrical exploration of love and loss, The Birds of Opulence centers on several generations of women in a bucolic southern black township as they live with and sometimes surrender to madness.

The Goode-Brown family, led by matriarch and pillar of the community Minnie Mae, is plagued by old secrets and embarrassment over mental illness and illegitimacy. Meanwhile, single mother Francine Clark is haunted by her dead, lightning-struck husband and forced to fight against both the moral judgment of the community and her own rebellious daughter, Mona. The residents of Opulence struggle with vexing relationships to the land, to one another, and to their own sexuality. As the members of the youngest generation watch their mothers and grandmothers pass away, they live with the fear of going mad themselves and must fight to survive.

Crystal Wilkinson offers up Opulence and its people in lush, poetic detail. It is a world of magic, conjuring, signs, and spells, but also of harsh realities that only love -- and love that's handed down -- can conquer. At once tragic and hopeful, this captivating novel is a story about another time, rendered for our own.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. 1962
  2. pp. 1-2
  1. The Known Bird. Yolanda
  2. pp. 3-16
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  1. Sky. Blood. Bone. Breath. Lucy
  2. pp. 17-36
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  1. Little Bird. Francine
  2. pp. 37-48
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  1. 1963
  2. pp. 49-50
  1. Summer Birds. Touch. The Visitors. Francine
  2. pp. 51-60
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  1. 1972
  2. pp. 61-62
  1. Wild Birds on Easter Sunday. Mona
  2. pp. 63-66
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  1. Girls. Ducks. No Stars in the Sky. Mona & Yolanda
  2. pp. 67-72
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  1. 1974
  2. pp. 73-74
  1. A Rock. A Stick. A Hummingbird. Mona & Yolanda
  2. pp. 75-78
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  1. 1976
  2. pp. 79-80
  1. Warming of Old Bones. New Ways. That Hurting Place. Minnie Mae
  2. pp. 81-88
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  1. The Prodigal Uncles. The Conk Story. The Red Heat of Memory. The Goodes & The Browns
  2. pp. 89-102
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  1. Dinner on the Grounds.
  2. pp. 103-110
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  1. The Homeplace.
  2. pp. 111-116
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  1. 1977
  2. pp. 117-118
  1. That One Thing Her Mother Warned Her About. Mona
  2. pp. 119-120
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  1. 1978
  2. pp. 121-122
  1. The Birthday Dinner. First Sign. Mona
  2. pp. 123-126
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  1. Flapping Wings. Nightjar. The Story of a Scar. Mona & Yolanda
  2. pp. 127-128
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  1. The Kitchen Ghosts. The Goode Women (Yolanda, Tookie, Minnie Mae)
  2. pp. 129-136
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  1. 1979
  2. pp. 137-138
  1. The Crow in the House. Tookie
  2. pp. 139-142
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  1. 1980
  2. pp. 143-144
  1. Spooining Tomatoes. Long Night. Accustomed to Death. Mona
  2. pp. 145-148
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  1. Blest Be the Tie That Binds.
  2. pp. 149-152
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  1. Need Is a Four-Letter Word. Mona
  2. pp. 153-162
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  1. 1994
  2. pp. 163-164
  1. Girls Everywhere. Kee Kee
  2. pp. 165-176
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  1. 1995
  2. pp. 177-178
  1. A Bird in the Darkness. A Cluster of Lonely Stars. Mona
  2. pp. 179-182
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  1. Little Fish. Lucy
  2. pp. 183-190
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  1. The Kitchen Ghosts. Joe
  2. pp. 191-200
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. 201-202
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  1. Other Works in the Series
  2. pp. 203-208
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780813166933
Related ISBN
9780813166919
MARC Record
OCLC
933525190
Pages
208
Launched on MUSE
2016-01-27
Language
English
Open Access
No
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