From the list on interracial friendship.
Who am I?
Having grown up in segregated Knoxville, TN, I've often wondered what having a black friend as a child would have been like. My MFA thesis, in the 1980s, was a novella about just such a friendship. A small group of my (white) MFA classmates insisted that I could not, should not write about black characters. Although I believed them to be mistaken, I put my thesis away and haven’t looked at it since. About ten years ago, I decided to try again. I took an early draft of a new novel to a workshop with John Dufresne, who encouraged me to continue. The result was Beginning with Cannonballs, which received positive reviews and won the 2021 IPPY Silver Medal for Multicultural Fiction.
Jill's book list on interracial friendship
Why did Jill love this book?
Given that this novel is set in Mississippi in the 1950s, I was intrigued by the teen-aged friendship at its center. When Cassie, who’s black, and Judith, who’s white, learn that they have the same father, they decide to join forces in claiming their share of the family inheritance. The result is a sometimes perilous and even other-worldly road trip from Mississippi to Virginia, during which the girls’ budding relationship is sorely tested.