Buzz? Justified? Yes! The Mothers is a stunning debut, it is beautifully crafted and is a wise and lingering piece of writing. The complexity of the characters and Ms Bennetts ability to allow them to unwind so slowly ( whilst in the middle of a fast paced storyline ) keeps the reader hooked. I wanted to know, not what was going to happen next, but how the characters felt about these events as they unfolded.
The Mothers is the story of the constraints of a smaller community where everyone knows everybody else’s business. The story is told, firstly, by the Mothers – the eponymous older women of the church community in which the three pivotal characters; Nadia, Luke & Aubrey, live and love. All three characters are marked by tragedy and that draws them together at different points with different consequences. Nadia’s decision to terminate her pregnancy early in the narrative impacts across all three characters lives, their stories are intertwined, their destinies tangled.
“All good secrets have a taste before you tell them, and if we’d taken a moment to swish this one around our mouths, we might have noticed the sourness of an unripe secret, plucked too soon, stolen and passed around before its season.”
A line like that is magic, it demonstrates the skill and talent of its writer and shows such promise, and such hope for not only the rest of that work but for the rest of their body of work. Brit Bennett is a young writer to watch, with some spectacular commentary on important social issues under her belt she writes with grace and forceful eloquence.