cover image A Silken Thread

A Silken Thread

Kim Vogel Sawyer. WaterBrook, $14.99 trade paper (352p) ISBN 978-0-7352-9012-9

In this finely wrought story, Vogel Sawyer (Waiting for Summer’s Return) takes reader to the 1895 Cotton Exposition in Atlanta. Willie Sharp takes a job at the Expo to pay for his father’s medical treatment after he suffers a stroke. Laurel Millard, meanwhile, is expected by her older siblings to care for their aging mother, but Laurel has dreams of a family of her own. Believing she might meet a wealthy bachelor who can fulfill her desires and help her meet her family obligations, Laurel becomes a weaver in the Silk House, which runs state-of-the-art looms within the expedition. While there are slight romantic elements, Vogel Sawyer focuses on the racial disparities of the time. Quincy Tate, who is black, gets a job as a groundskeeper for the Expo, while Willie works as a security guard there and gets posted at the Silk House after a break-in at the Women's Building. But the two work in far different positions. After Willie becomes the guard of Laurel’s section, they get closer, and his strength of character shines brightly despite others looking down on him due to his socioeconomic status. The result is a truly inspirational tale cemented in the bonds of family and true friendship.[em] (Apr.) [/em]