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Plantation mistress Amanda Satterfield’s intense grief over losing her daughter crosses the line into madness when she takes a newborn slave child as her own and names her Granada. Troubled by his wife’s disturbing mental state and concerned about a mysterious plague that is sweeping through the plantation’s slave population, Master Satterfield purchases Polly Shine, a slave woman known as a healer. But the master gets more than he bargained for when Polly’s sharp tongue and troubling predictions cause unrest throughout the plantation. Complicating matters further, Polly recognizes “the gift” in young Granada, and a domestic battle of wills ensues that raises tantalizing questions about who Polly Shine really is: a clever charlatan, a meddlesome witch, or a divine redeemer.

Filled with strong, vivid female characters and inspired by true-life events, Odell brilliantly brings the
pre-Civil War South to life in this masterfully written novel, centered on a mysterious and charismatic
healer readers won’t soon forget.

4 Comments

    • Barb Bode Langrall
    • Posted February 21, 2012 at 12:12 am
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    I was fortunate enough to get this from a friend of mine at Random House. What a treasure this book is. The characters are mufti-dimensional, vibrant and made indelible impressions on me.I stayed up late a couple of nights and contemplated calling in sick to finish this memorable read.The tone of the pre-civil war era of our country, societal layers of slavery and the mysteries of medicine at this time of our history are all explored in this novel. I felt like I was walking along side of Granada as Polly Shine used her unique teachings to enlighten her student on many levels. Odell is brilliant as he smoothly transitions through the generations while revealing years of life’s lessons and brutal reality. We are reminded of the power of oral history among women and an enduring base of our great country FREEDOM.

    • Jon Odell
    • Posted February 22, 2012 at 11:11 pm
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    Barb, thank you for that eloquent review. Can’t tell you what a thrill it is for an author to be understood at such an intimate level. Thank you again.

    • Lori
    • Posted February 23, 2012 at 7:04 pm
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    OMG! I dont know what or why I was drawn to Audible on Tuesday, but just cruising through and came across this gift. It has been quite the while since I have been so moved by a novel. The story sucked me in from the beginning and has yet to let me go. I can smell the soil, the swamp, the sweat. I can see Polly clearly and hear the urgency of the lessons she taught. I felt her frustration when realizing Grenada was yet to young to understand, but as my elders have often told me…you just keep living and you will know. Eventually Grenada learned. My heart rejoiced with hers when she realized although she chose a different path she was never forgotten. This was indeed a treat to the ears and to the mind and heck to all of my senses. Thank you.

    • Jon Odell
    • Posted February 24, 2012 at 5:21 pm
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    Lori, I was very moved to read your words. You have no idea how much an author yearns to have his work do deeply understood, and even more, to be deeply felt. Thanks so much for the generosity of your works and the thoughtfulness to let me know.


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