Paulette Boudreaux, "Mulberry"
Paulette Boubreaux, Mulberry
Sunday, October 25, 2pm
Mulberry: Winner of the 2015 Lee Smith Novel Prize, Mulberry is a gripping and beautifully written tale of family crisis and personal strength that focuses on Maddy, an eleven-year-old girl struggling to keep herself and her three younger brothers, afloat in small-town segregated Mississippi in the early 1960s. After Maddy’s newborn baby sister falls ill and her mother decides she must accompany the baby to the far-away state hospital, Maddy finds herself in charge of her brothers as it becomes apparent that their combat veteran father is not up to the task. Despite having to navigate the challenges of the grown-up world under her father’s increasing neglect, Maddy is able to find strength, wisdom, and, eventually, hope for a better future.
Paulette Boudreaux grew up in Mississippi, has lived in the Northeast, and now resides in California, but the South is often on her mind. So, her debut novel, Mulberry, the winner of the inaugural Lee Smith Novel Prize, is set in the Mississippi of a bygone era. She is happy to speak to book clubs about that era and the impetus for the novel, and about her creative process. Paulette has a master's of fine arts degree from Mills College and bachelor's degree in journalism from Northeastern.