Friday, July 27, 2007

The Baptism by Shelia P. Moses

Twin brothers Leon and Luke are about to be baptized. While this is fine for Luke, it is not so good for our narrator Leon. Leon knows that once he is baptized and saved he must stop sinning and that is something he likes to do a lot of. Can Leon hold off on causing trouble, arguing with the step-father and fighting the other kids in town long enough to get baptized? Underlying this plot line is a town of former sharecroppers who struggles with their own history. This is a poignant story and I give it a YAY.

6 Comments:

At August 1, 2007 at 6:16 AM , Blogger kathy said...

I was on the fence about this one. I liked Kip's posting :) The dialect was interesting especially as it carried through the narration. Perhaps it is because it isn't one I have an ear for, but it didn't always flow smoothly for me - like in some places the dialect lapsed into standard English. I also realize that I prefer books that don't paint all adults as anti-hero / bad (I am trying to decide if this is something I need to overcome for Thumbs Up, or a valid literary preference - I'll maybe post on the e-mail to ask for feedback on this).

Ma isn't anti-hero to Leon, but I had a hard time with their relationship.
p.31
As mad as Ma is with me, she smiles.
"That's good, son. Ma loves you boys.'
That's the good thing about my ma. she don't hold no hate in her heart. She forgives us right after she beats our behind.

Maybe Leon's sense of agency is an awareness of the consequences, but decision to be "bad" anyway because that's what he would rather do (or despite himself).

The ending is a good one - and maybe offers a promise of reconciliation?

sort of a rambling post - but a yay for now.

 
At September 24, 2007 at 5:19 PM , Blogger Ms. Zandra said...

Overall, I like this book. I found Leon to be endearing, if not humorous. The only problem I had with this book is the ending. I did not find it to be realistic that Arthur Wells would be so generous as to loan his truck to Ma indefinitely, much less attend the baptisim with his family all because Frank stole Ma's money. What was his reaction when the daddy was murdered? And, Buddy Bush (of THE LEGEND OF BUDDY BUSH and THE RETURN OF BUDDY BUSH) was the one who baptized the boys in the end???? Anyway, this is a MAYBE for me.

 
At October 24, 2007 at 7:08 AM , Blogger Kara Fredericks said...

I liked the book and agree that the subject is important but I think that it is too young for our audience. I have to say NAY.

 
At November 26, 2007 at 7:20 PM , Blogger Katie said...

I also found this book to be slightly young. I felt that it read more like a short story, that could later be developed into a fuller story. Nay.

 
At January 22, 2008 at 6:52 AM , Blogger kathy said...

In light of subsequent reading since I voted on this title, I am revising some votes to narrow the field for the top 20 discussion. NAY

 
At January 29, 2008 at 6:20 AM , Blogger Anne Keller said...

Agree with Katie. Nay

 

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