Kind of Kin

Rilla Askew. Ecco, $25.99 (432p) ISBN 978-0-06-219879-2
This compelling, deliberate novel from Askew (The Mercy Seat), told from a rotation of voices and perspectives, delves into the lives of an Oklahoma family and community in the aftermath of new immigration legislation. Sweet Kirkendall is a smalltown wife and mother whose marriage is on autopilot; her son, Carl, is becoming a bully; and, to make matters worse, after her sister dies, her nephew, Dustin, has come to live with them. When Sweet’s father is arrested for harboring undocumented workers, the pre-trial publicity and Carl’s growing aggression drive Sweet to question her core values. With her father refusing to defend himself in court, and Dustin on the lam with one of the farm’s illegal aliens, Sweet musters the courage to act decisively in defense of her family and against the implementation of the controversial new law. The delineation of this fictional state immigration law gets the book off to a slow start, but later Askew introduces an inspired thread about the political ambitions of the bill’s sponsor, state representative Monica Moorehouse, a complex and conflicted character. Although the sections narrated by Dustin sometimes miss the mark, whenever Sweet or Monica are front and center, this novel is rich, rewarding, and humane. Agent: PJ Mark, Janklow & Nesbit. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 10/22/2012
Release date: 01/01/2013
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FORMATS
Hardcover - 432 pages - 978-1-78239-013-8
Ebook - 432 pages - 978-0-06-219881-5
Book - 978-0-06-223963-1
Book - 978-0-06-223956-3
Paperback - 417 pages - 978-0-06-219880-8
Hardcover - 627 pages - 978-1-4104-5981-7
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