Calling Me Home

Calling Me Home, Julie Kibler

This book is really two stories. In the present, Isabelle (a very old white woman) asks Dorrie (her younger black hairdresser) to drive her on a road trip. Along the way, Isabelle tells the second story, of her much younger self and her forbidden love for a black man. Eventually, the destination of the road trip is revealed, and the two stories come together in an unexpected way.

I found this book exceptional for the way it was able to address the big issues of race, love, and family – both in the past and the present – in an unflinching way. The characters are very well drawn and I got caught up in their stories, to the point that I cried at the ending (I almost NEVER cry when I’m reading.) I knew even before I finished it that I was reading an exceptional book, and the ending did not disappoint.

You might like: The Help, by Kathryn Stockett. The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd.