The nine stories in this collection feature four generations of characters grappling with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church's double standards and their own needs and passions.
Deesh Philyaw’s debut short story collection, The Secret Lives of Church ladies, became 2020 National Book Award for Fiction finalist.
Admittedly this title was slightly mis-leading but focuses on the quiet and unseen lives of multiple Black women looking to establish self-determination. These short stories feel like a derivative of Toni Morrison but with a fresh perspective. The characters' ages ranges due to various mindsets and frame of references with age; however, Philyaw doesn’t miss a beat with maintaining engaging writing. As you read each story you'll take in themes that will cause you to reflect on your decisions and personal experiences.
Deesha Philyaw has been recognized copiously in the New York Times, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Publishers Weekly just to name a few. She acknowledged that her stories are drawn from folklore and from personal experiences within the black community. She wanted her work to open another window into the many perspectives of the black community, but mostly with black women. She also felt this collection would be beneficial for the season of turmoil our country is going through. Another black voice speaking out to be heard.
"The Secret Lives of Church Ladies explores the raw and tender places where black women and girls dare to follow their desires and pursue a momentary reprieve from being good. The nine stories in this collection feature four generations of characters grappling with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church's double standards and their own needs and passions"-- Provided by publisher.
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