Decorations in a Ruined Cemetery
A Novel With an Introduction by the Author
John Gregory Brown's debut novel examines family, race, and faith in a heartbreaking tale of identity, devotion, and regret. The story centers on the Eagen family of New Orleans, Irish Catholics of "mixed blood" in a city where race defines destiny. In 1965 Thomas Eagen and his twelve-years-old twins, Meredith and Lowell, abruptly drive off, leaving his second wife, Catherine, and their home. As they cross Lake Pontchartrain, a section of the bridge collapses, injuring Murphy Warrington, an African American man who once worked for Thomas's father. Murphy becomes the catalyst for a series of revelations about Thomas's light-skinned black mother and the reasons she abandoned her husband and son when Thomas was an infant.
About the Authors
"Moving, wise, and wonderful"—(London) Times
"Decorations in a Ruined Cemetery is a sensitive, graceful piece of writing with an emotional candor about it that speaks well for John Gregory Brown's future life as a writer."—Boston Globe
"An intricate, musical elaboration and exploration...The opening sentence [is] a small masterpiece in itself."—San Francisco Chronicle
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