Tryin' to Sleep in the Bed You Made

Tryin' to Sleep in the Bed You Made

4.8 37
by Virginia DeBerry, Donna Grant
     
 

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In 1989, Gayle Saunders Hilliard is living a nightmare. Her husband, Ramsey, a compulsive gambler, has committed suicide, leaving Gayle, her young daughter and her widowed mother destitute. Pressed to add to her income as a receptionist, Gayle, who is African American, takes a part-time job as a maid at a suburban New York hotel, where she encounters her childhood…  See more details below

Overview

In 1989, Gayle Saunders Hilliard is living a nightmare. Her husband, Ramsey, a compulsive gambler, has committed suicide, leaving Gayle, her young daughter and her widowed mother destitute. Pressed to add to her income as a receptionist, Gayle, who is African American, takes a part-time job as a maid at a suburban New York hotel, where she encounters her childhood best friend, Pat Reid, a polished executive for an ad agency. Pat, who was taken in by Gayle's parents and brought up as family after her mother abandoned her, hasn't spoken to Gayle in 10 years?ever since Gayle neglected to pick her up at an abortion clinic because she was tied up with her gambler husband. In flashbacks, we see Gayle's upbringing as the indulged child of older parents, and Pat's need to revise her family history as she becomes a workaholic and claws her way up the hierarchy of Manhattan corporate life. Eventually, the two draw upon their shared past to rebuild their lives. The authors have collaborated seamlessly on this well-paced debut. Their heroines are balanced and clearly drawn, while their plot manages to spring myriad surprises without resorting to obvious gimmickry. In an age when personal responsibility is often abrogated in the name of early childhood emotional trauma, Pat and Gayle are refreshingly honest characters, accepting of their own and each other's shortcomings.

This novel about the friendship of three African Americans from their childhood meeting through their present-day lives is filled with fast-paced events that pull readers into the story. Gayle Saunders, growing up in a home with caring, loving parents, seems to have it all?beauty, charisma, and eventually a rich, handsome husband and a beautiful daughter; she loses almost everything and ends up in a homeless shelter. Patricia Reid is a tossed-away child who struggles for acceptance by becoming an academic and, later, a corporate success; she strives for perfection before revealing her true identity to her wealthy father; she becomes emotionally empty and another victim of downsizing. Marcus Carter becomes the baseball hero he's never wanted to be and almost kills himself in the process. He seems on a self-destructive course until he faces the truth about his brother's death. As adolescents, the lives of the three are forever intertwined when they witness the gun accident that kills Marcus's brother. The choices they make throughout their lives lead to undesirable consequences but result in each person becoming a worthwhile and compassionate adult. In the satisfying ending, Gayle, Pat, and Marcus emerge from their desolation and all is right with their world. The story is filled with lessons about life, including the church as a social haven and the value and necessity for true friends and family. YAs will identify with these strong personalities as they struggle to overcome real problems in a contemporary world.

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Editorial Reviews

Essence
An engaging novel.
From the Publisher
"Driven by believable characters...this sisterhood-is-powerful first novel seems a natural for Oprah's Book Club. It eventually boils down to one affirmative, "You Go, Girl!"—Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781620958124
Publisher:
BookBaby
Publication date:
01/07/1997
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
405
Sales rank:
252,375
File size:
574 KB

Meet the Author

Virginia DeBerry and Donna Grant are the bestselling authors of Better Than I Know Myself and Far from the Tree. Tryin' to Sleep in the Bed You Made won the Merit Award for fiction from the black caucus of the American Library Association, the Book of the Year award from Blackboard, and the New Author of the Year Award from the Go On Girl Book Club. Virginia and Donna first met while working as models, and what should have been a rivalry ended up as a decades-long friendship. Virginia lives in New Jersey, and Donna lives in Brooklyn, New York.

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Tryin' to Sleep in the Bed You Made 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 61 reviews.
BuyThisBookKC More than 1 year ago
This just has to be the best book out there. So i have been looking for just a good book about us african american women and our struggles and this just happened to hit the spot. Whenever i would read this i could image everything from the begining to end. When Marcus proposed to Patricia i literally screamed it was so exciting and surprising . Everything about this book is exellent i and cant wait to buy the sequel.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Gayle and Patricia are really great soul friends, they came around full circle in their lives. I read Gotta Keep On Tryin first, I just had to have the beginning and now I Love these two authors, they touch home with their characters, kept you reading and you just flow with the characters. I have two more to read my them, hope I will enjoy those as much as I enjoyed these two.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book and loved it so I bought it for christmas presents.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderfully developed characters with depth and great storyline. I loved this book and can't wait to read more from these authors!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You could feel the women in this books pain. Great book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book twelve years ago, and I still remember it. I loved it then and still do now. My younger sister and I read it together. She finished before me great book
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book years ago and the characters still stick in my head to this day. You may identify with some of the experiences. A very good book indeed.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I firdt read this book in 1999 when I was 17. Til this day I will pick it up when I have no new novels to read, not just because it's here, but because it's just that good. Looking for a good read this is the find.
Guest More than 1 year ago
THIS BOOK KEEP ME INTERESTED. THERE WAS NEVER A DULL MOMENT. I COULDN'T PUT IT DOWN. THE END TURNED OUT JUST THE WAY IT SHOULD HAVE.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I brought this book for my mother who is a avid reader and loves African American books. She absolutely loved this book. She called me several times while reading this book to tell me how great it was. So I definitely recommend the book as a great gift idea. I was very pleased with my purchase!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
There are no words to describe the dept of this book. I am waiting on the movie! Even though there is no way this story can be told in 2 hours. It was so edge of your seat, stay up all night, let one eye sleep & one eye read material. The movie still plays in my mind. What's happening with them now! The characters became my friends. The way they had something fabulous at ever corner in the book is amazing. Just when you thought, could it get anymore interesting, BAM! I laughed, cried, cheered & realized what real life is all about. We all can relate to growing up with old friends & the difference in us all. This book shows strength. It shows what life is all about, Ups & Downs! I strongly recommend spending your last to purchase this book immediately. You don't know good reading, until you have this one under your belt. I went back & purchased it on Hardback for my collection. This is a 'MUST' have....TODAY!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a must read book. It was introduced to me by a co-worker in 1999 who had received it from a friend. This book was so well put together it was passed on. This book should be shared among girlfriends and people of all races can relate to it. I read a worn out paperback (for which I passed on) But I placed a Special Order for the Hardcover to keep in my personal library. I also enjoyed it. After all these years I still recommend this book to people. Thank you DeBerry and Grant for a wonderful, touching and heartfelt story.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I finished this book I immediately emailed the authors to thank them for writing such a beautiful book! I borrowed this book from my mother in law but I'm buying my own copy so I can read it again! The storytelling was so real...I almost felt like an intruder in the characters lives. YOU GO LADIES!! I'm looking forward to your next book! I think this story would make a great movie!
Guest More than 1 year ago
when are you going to give us some more thoughts to grow on? the books are great. they have tought me a few lessons in life through the experience and wisdom of an older woman. thankfully i won't have to make some of the mistakes that the characters have made, and i will become a better woman. i learned from you guys. thanks
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book had a great story line. I read it in 2 days. You won't be able to put the book down.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've been reading this book for about 2 months then I move away and left it in New Orleans, with no way to get it back. I can't seem to forget about it and I'm determined to finish it. It's really great up to chapter 19.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I need Virginia and Donna to come out with more books!! Trying to Sleep in the Bed You Made and Far From the Tree are some awesome books.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was wonderful. I read this book in 1 day and I read it again the next week
Guest More than 1 year ago
As I read on an on the book became even more engaging. I started talking about the characters in the book as if they were my friends. Every time I even recommend the book it brings tears to my eyes. Yes..the book was that good.