Silver Sparrow

Silver Sparrow

A Novel

eBook - 2011
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A story about a man's deception, a family's complicity, and 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 when secrets are revealed and illusions shattered. As Jones explores the backstories of her rich yet flawed characters, the father, the two mothers, the grandmother, and the uncle, she also reveals the joy, as well as the destruction, they brought to one another's lives. At the heart of it all are the two lives at stake, and like the best writers--think Toni Morrison with The Bluest Eye--Jones portrays the fragility of these young girls with raw authenticity as they seek love, demand attention, and try to imagine themselves as women, just not as their mothers.
Published: Chapel Hill, N.C. : Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, c2011.
ISBN: 9781616200664
Characteristics: 1 online resource (340 p.)


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Feb 22, 2018

One can only imagine what it's like to know and not tell. Heartbreaking and beautiful, this story surely has thousands of renditions. We would be blessed to know such restraint and resilience. Read it and weep.

Trisha_KHCPL Jan 03, 2017

I really enjoyed this book. I loved that the first half was one daughters side of the story and the second half was the other daughters side of the story.

Aug 16, 2016

A rare find - a book with tension and suspense, but without any 'bad guys'. You'll root for every single character.

LPL_KateG Mar 22, 2016

It's been a couple years since I read this and I'd like to re-read - I remember loving the book and finding it both charming and sad at times. Great narration, could also fit as a YA read!

KindianaJones Dec 16, 2014

I picked up this book because I was intrigued by the cover. Like many other readers, I devoured it and was eager to get back to it when I had to put it down. It was like watching a slow-motion train wreck. The last line was as close to perfect as I can imagine.

sn6177nr Sep 25, 2014

Silver Sparrow is by far the best novel I've read in a long time! A story told of radically different experienced intertwined by relation and described in beautiful and evocative prose.

Tayari Jones' ability to create real feeling characters and nuanced relationships in fiction is impressive throughout the book!

What a read!

NYPLRecommends Mar 10, 2014

Silver Sparrow is the story of two families and a secret bigamist father. At least one family is a secret. The other family is aware they are the second family and must remain a secret. Two daughters are born within months of each other, one to each family. The backdrop of the story is the 70s and 80s in African American society in Atlanta. The story is captivating, well-crafted and the characters are realistic and unsentimental.

pleasuretee Apr 17, 2013

Captivating story!

Sep 15, 2012

The characters were meant to be flawed to make the story more realistic, but at times I just felt like yelling at them for being so stupid.

Jun 06, 2012

Tayari Jones’ Silver Sparrow has a great first line: “My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist.” In this novel with two narrators, Jones lets each girl speak in simple yet eloquent voices that are their own. Silver Sparrow is rich with themes for discussion.

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sn6177nr Sep 25, 2014

sn6177nr thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over


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