Sugar Land is a southern fried novel about love, Lead Belly, and liberation. According to a starred Kirkus Review , Sugar Land "is a postcard of small-town Texas life from Prohibition through civil rights, tracing the treatment and awareness of gay people through these decades. The love child of Fannie Flagg and Rita Mae Brown… [a] ravishing debut.”
It’s 1923 in Midland, Texas, and Miss Dara falls in love with her best friend―who also happens to be a girl. Terrified, Miss Dara takes a job at the Imperial State Prison Farm for men. Once there, she befriends inmate and soon-to-be legendary blues singer Lead Belly, who sings his way out (true story)―but only after he makes her promise to free herself from her own prison. Sugar Land is a triumphant, beautiful novel about the heart’s refusal to be denied what the heart wants.
|Publisher:||Red Hen Press|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.00(d)|
About the Author
tammy lynne stoner ’s work has been selected for more than a dozen anthologies and literary journals. She was nominated for a Million Writers Award and earned her MFA from Antioch University. Stemming from what her grandmother calls her “gypsy blood,” tammy has lived in 15 cities, working as a biscuit maker, a medical experimentee, a forklift operator, a gas station attendant, and a college instructor, among other odd jobs. She is the creator of Dottie’s Magic Pockets and the publisher of Gertrude Press, based in in Portland, OR, where she lives with her lady-friend, Karena, and their three kids.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I just finished this brilliant book and am now buying it as holiday gifts for several friends whom I know will enjoy it. It's one of those stories you fully immerse yourself in, giggle out loud while reading and don't want to end. Dara's world is 1920s Texas and, while it is interesting to journey back to a time and place so different in many ways, Stoner takes us through Dara's world, her mind and heart, in a way that is always intimate and honest. It's an unassumingly romantic read that, like its main character, doesn't fuss too much and keeps you laughing, crying and moving forward at just the right time. This is the most original novel I've read in a while. I loved it.
It is 1923 Texas, and Dara realizes she has fallen in love with her best friend. The problem is that her best friend is a woman, and this is 1923, and it's Texas. Being publicly lesbian will lead to a very difficult life. They are treated as criminals and looked down upon. She doesn't want a life like that. So she takes a job at a prison for men, working in the kitchen. Since she likes women, Dara feels like this would be a safe place for her to basically hide out. She is terrified of being found out. Interestingly, her friend keeps writing her letters, and how she would go public with Dara and they could be happy. Dara eventually has the letters sent back. When Dara has been at the prison for ten years, the Warden suddenly proposes. She didn't see it coming, but she goes on to have a decent life with him. He is a good man and treats her well. Dara now has two stepdaughters. It was interesting how she always seemed to treat the one stepdaughter better than the other, maybe because she felt like she could understand the one stepdaughter better and relate to her more. I felt bad for the one daughter, Debbie, Dara always seems to be short with her. I liked this novel, it was something a little different. Reading how terrified Dara was when she realized she was a lesbian, and she honestly feared for her life. It's different from these days. How different would her life have been if she had been public with her friend, but she might not have lived long it was so dangerous.