Live at Brookline Booksmith! Jacinda Townsend: Mother Country
In person at Brookline Booksmith! Celebrate the release of Mother Country with author Jacinda Townsend, in conversation with Jennifer Haigh.
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Books will be available for purchase at the event, but you can ensure that you get a copy by preordering on the registration page. You can pick your book up after 6:30PM on the day of the event.
Can't make it to the event? Preorder the book on the registration page to have it signed, and choose to have it held or shipped from the store!
Saddled with student loans, medical debt, and the sudden news of her infertility after a major car accident, Shannon, an African American woman, follows her boyfriend to Morocco in search of relief. There, in the cobblestoned medina of Marrakech, she finds a toddler in a pink jacket whose face mirrors her own. With the help of her boyfriend and a bribed official, Shannon makes the fateful decision to adopt and raise the girl in Louisville, Kentucky. But the girl already has a mother: Souria, an undocumented Mauritanian woman who was trafficked as a teen, and who managed to escape to Morocco to build another life.
In rendering Souria’s separation from her family across vast stretches of desert and Shannon’s alienation from her mother under the same roof, Jacinda Townsend brilliantly stages cycles of intergenerational trauma and healing. Linked by the girl who has been a daughter to them both, these unforgettable protagonists move toward their inevitable reckoning. Mother Country is a bone-deep and unsparing portrayal of the ethical and emotional claims we make upon one another in the name of survival, in the name of love.
Jacinda Townsend is the author of Saint Monkey, which won the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize and the James Fenimore Cooper Prize. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and teaches in the MFA program at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
Jennifer Haigh is the author of the novels Mrs. Kimble, Baker Towers, The Condition, Faith and Heat and Light, and the short story collection News From Heaven. Her latest novel, Mercy Street, was published in February 2022.