Silver Sparrow
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Author:
Published:
Algonquin Books 2012
Accelerated Reader:
IL: UG - BL: 4.9 - AR Pts: 13
Lexile measure:
770L
Status:
Checked Out
Description
From the New York Times Bestselling Author of An American Marriage “A love story . . . Full of perverse wisdom and proud joy . . . Jones’s skill for wry understatement never wavers.” —O: The Oprah MagazineSilver Sparrow will break your heart before you even know it. Tayari Jones has written a novel filled with characters I’ll never forget. This is a book I’ll read more than once.” —Judy Blume With the opening line of Silver Sparrow, "My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist," author Tayari Jones unveils a breathtaking story about a man's deception, a family's complicity, and the two teenage girls caught in the middle. Set in a middle-class neighborhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, the novel revolves around James Witherspoon's two families—the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are sisters. It is a relationship destined to explode. This is the third stunning novel from an author deemed "one of the most important writers of her generation" (the Atlanta Journal Constitution).
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
05/08/2012
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781616201531
ASIN:
B008041R6Y
Accelerated Reader:
UG
Level 4.9, 13 Points
Lexile measure:
770
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20

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Grouped Work ID:
3f369045-f330-1571-0781-f714a027d950
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No
Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 15:13:35
Date Updated:
Jun 12, 2018 15:13:35
Last Metadata Check:
Sep 16, 2019 13:52:27
Last Metadata Change:
Sep 15, 2019 04:56:27
Last Availability Check:
Sep 16, 2019 13:52:29
Last Availability Change:
Sep 16, 2019 13:20:42
Last Grouped Work Modification Time:
Sep 17, 2019 01:46:12

OverDrive Product Record

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keywords
      • value: Oprah Winfrey
      • value: novels about family
      • value: African American Literature
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      • value: Atlanta
      • value: secret family
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      • value: Bigamy
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      • value: Behold the Dreamers
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      • value: purple hibiscus
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        Tayari Jones is the author of four novels, including Silver Sparrow, The Untelling, and Leaving Atlanta. Jones holds degrees from Spelman College, Arizona State University, and the University of Iowa. A winner of numerous literary awards, she is a professor of creative writing at Emory University. Visit her website at www.tayarijones.com.

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publishDate
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title
Silver Sparrow
fullDescription
From the New York Times Bestselling Author of An American Marriage
“A love story . . . Full of perverse wisdom and proud joy . . . Jones’s skill for wry understatement never wavers.”
O: The Oprah Magazine
Silver Sparrow will break your heart before you even know it. Tayari Jones has written a novel filled with characters I’ll never forget. This is a book I’ll read more than once.”
Judy Blume
With the opening line of Silver Sparrow, "My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist," author Tayari Jones unveils a breathtaking story about a man's deception, a family's complicity, and the two teenage girls caught in the middle.
Set in a middle-class neighborhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, the novel revolves around James Witherspoon's two families—the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are sisters. It is a relationship destined to explode. This is the third stunning novel from an author deemed "one of the most important writers of her generation" (the Atlanta Journal Constitution).
gradeLevels
      • value: Grade 3
reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        February 7, 2011
        A coming-of-age story of sorts, Jones's melodramatic latest (after The Untelling) chronicles the not-quite-parallel lives of Dana Lynn Yarboro and Bunny Chaurisse Witherspoon in 1980s Atlanta. Both girls—born four months apart—are the daughters of James Witherspoon, a secret bigamist, but only Dana and her mother, Gwen, are aware of his double life. This, Dana surmises, confers "one peculiar advantage" to her and Gwen over James's other family, with whom he lives full time, though such knowledge is small comfort in the face of all their disadvantages. Perpetually feeling second best, 15-year-old Dana takes up with an older boy whose treatment of her only confirms her worst expectations about men. Meanwhile, Chaurisse enjoys the easy, uncomplicated comforts of family, and though James has done his utmost to ensure his daughters' paths never cross, the girls, of course, meet, and their friendship sets their worlds toward inevitable (and predictable) collision. Set on its forced trajectory, the novel piles revelation on revelation, growing increasingly histrionic and less believable. For all its concern with the mysteries of the human heart, the book has little to say about the vagaries of what motivates us to love and lie and betray.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        Starred review from February 15, 2011

        "My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist." So starts the third novel by the critically acclaimed Jones (The Untelling). The first part is narrated by Dana, the daughter of his illicit second marriage. Dana and her mother, Gwen, always knew about the first family and that they came second. From a distance, they watch the first family, daughter Chaurisse and mother Laverne, going about their comfortable lives, unaware of James's secret life and getting the best of what James has to offer. Gwen scrapes by on her nurse's salary, while Dana can choose a magnet school or a summer camp only after Chaurisse has chosen, to insure that the girls don't meet. But eventually they do meet, first by accident at the science fair, with only Dana aware that Chaurisse is her half-sister. As their lives begin to intersect, the narrative is passed to Chaurisse, plain looking and a mediocre student, who's enchanted by the silver girl with the good hair who accepts her overtures of friendship. Things come to a head when the girls have car trouble on the way to a party, and James and Gwen both come riding to the rescue. Jones uses 1970s and 1980s African American society in Atlanta as a fully realized backdrop to the personal drama of a few people. VERDICT Highly recommended for all, but especially for readers of women's fiction and African American women writers. [See Prepub Alert, 11/22/10.]--Debbie Bogenschutz, Cincinnati State Technical & Community Coll.

        Copyright 2011 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        February 1, 2011

        In her third novel set in Atlanta, Jones (The Untelling, 2005, etc.) writes about two African-American half sisters, only one of whom knows that the other exists until their father's double life starts to unravel.

        When James Witherspoon, the owner of a successful limousine service, and Gwendolyn Yarboro have their marriage ceremony in 1969 four months after the birth of their baby Dana, Gwen knows that James already has a wife and an even younger baby. While James, who visits regularly if never often enough, and Gwen, a practical nurse, make sure Dana has every middle-class advantage, Dana grows up aware that her parents' "marriage" is a secret and that she cannot openly claim her father; James' devoted stepbrother Raleigh is listed on her birth certificate. Gwen and Dana habitually spy on James' legitimate wife Laverne and daughter Chaurisse, who live in blissful ignorance of James's bigamy. By adolescence, Dana, who attends a prestigious magnate high school and wants to attend Mount Holyoke, increasingly resents the plainer, less gifted Chaurisse, whose needs always seem to come first for James. After meeting Chaurisse by accident at a science fair, Dana finds ways for their paths to intersect. When she finally "befriends" Chaurisse, Chaurisse is thrilled that a popular girl likes her enough to visit her at home. Visits happen during hours Dana knows James will not be there. Dana's adolescent plans, for acceptance as much as revenge, inevitably go awry, but this is less a tragedy than a case of survival and making do. While Dana is at the novel's center, Jones gives both girls' points of view, allowing readers to empathize with each of James's families. Chaurisse may not know about Dana, but she is far from blissful in her ignorance, and her mother Laverne has endured more than her fair share of suffering. James is harder to fathom but also hard to hate.

        Jones beautifully evokes Atlanta in the 1980s while creating gritty, imperfect characters whose pain lingers in the reader's heart.

        (COPYRIGHT (2011) KIRKUS REVIEWS/NIELSEN BUSINESS MEDIA, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)

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shortDescription

From the New York Times Bestselling Author of An American Marriage
"A love story . . . Full of perverse wisdom and proud joy . . . Jones's skill for wry understatement never wavers."
O: The Oprah Magazine
"Silver Sparrow will break your heart before you even know it. Tayari Jones has written a novel filled with characters I'll never forget. This is a book I'll read more than once."
Judy Blume
With the opening line of Silver Sparrow, "My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist," author Tayari Jones unveils a breathtaking story about a man's deception, a family's complicity, and the two teenage girls caught in the middle.
Set in a middle-class neighborhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, the novel revolves around James Witherspoon's two families—the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are...

sortTitle
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publisher
Algonquin Books