cover image The Supremes Sing the Happy Heartache Blues

The Supremes Sing the Happy Heartache Blues

Edward Kelsey Moore. Holt, $28 (320p) ISBN 978-1-250-10794-7

Moore (The Supremes at Earl’s All-You-Can-Eat) returns to Plainview, Ind., to tell further delightful tales of the Supremes, with story lines filled with music and the pain between fathers and their adult children. If these Supremes were a musical group rather than childhood friends with a nickname that has lasted decades, Odette Henry would be the lead singer. She is always trying to help those around her and has become accustomed to receiving sometimes-useful advice from her dead mother and other spirits. Odette and her friend Barbara Jean Carlson hope to orchestrate a reconciliation between blues man El Walker, long absent from town, and his son, Odette’s husband, James. Other plot threads follow the third Supreme, Clarice Baker, who’s struggling with nerves before her Chicago piano concert. Moore weaves these and other strands together beautifully, with humor balancing out the more painful moments. His characters, both living and dead, come together to make a wonderful whole. (June)