Publication Date: 27/04/2023 ISBN: 9781529339253 Category:


Tara M. Stringfellow

Publisher: John Murray Press
Publication Date: 27/04/2023 ISBN: 9781529339253 Category:
Paperback / Softback





‘A rhapsodic hymn to Black women’ New York Times Book Review

‘Epic yet intimate’ Cosmopolitan

‘Ferocious and compassionate’ Irish Times


Joan was only a child the last time she visited Memphis. She doesn’t remember the bustle of Beale Street or the smell of honeysuckle as she climbs the porch steps to her aunt’s house. But when the front door opens, she does remember her cousin Derek.

As Joan learns more about her family’s past she discovers she’s not the only North woman to have experienced great hurt. But she also sees their resilience and courage, how these extraordinary women fry green tomatoes and braid hair and sing all the while.

Joan can’t change the past, but she can change her future. It’s time to find her own song to sing.


‘I couldn’t put it down. You will fall in love with these women’

‘One of the best books I’ve ever read’

‘Utterly spellbinding’

‘This book has my entire heart’

‘It felt so real – I cried at their pain and smiled at their joy’

‘Intricately plotted, wildly satisfying’

‘Epic, in every sense of the word. It completely blew me away’

Publisher Review

If ever there was a novel that reflects how the past can shape us, and how we can change our own story, it is this stunning debut . . . this beautifully written, inspiring story is full of hope and memorable characters -- Books of the Year * Woman and Home * I fell in love with this book and its characters . . . I can't wait to read more from this author -- Books of the Year * Prima * Written with the grace of a poet, Memphis is as hopeful as it is heartbreaking. I fell in love with this family, from Joan's fierce heart to her grandmother Hazel's determined resilience. Tara Stringfellow will be an author to watch for years to come . . . A stellar debut * Jacqueline Woodson, bestselling author of Red at the Bone * In luminous, lyrical prose, Tara Stringfellow sings the song of the North women - and the North men - with wisdom, humor, and deep humanity. Memphis is an American epic, a tribute to life in all of its sorrow and joyful resilience * Chloe Benjamin, bestselling author of The Immortalists * An evocative, compelling tale . . . Tara M Stringfellow assembles an endearing and unforgettable cast of characters who find strength in vulnerability, safety in art, and liberation in telling the truth. This is a shining, splendid testimony in the vein of Gloria Naylor, Delores Phillips, Ayana Mathis, and Honoree Jeffers * Robert Jones, Jr., New York Times bestselling author of The Prophets * Memphis is at once a sprawling generational epic and an intimate character study . . . There is sorrow in these pages, but there is also joy and wit and warmth . . . incredibly satisfying [and] deeply affecting * Roxane Gay * A stunning debut, a deeply affecting portrait of familial bonds. Rich with indelible black women and Southern charm * Irenosen Okojie * Black American literature at its finest . . . a symphony of stories * Irish Independent * A rhapsodic hymn to Black women * The New York Times Book Review * Ferocious and compassionate . . . Stringfellow deftly weaves the voices of four vivid, formidable and funny women over three generations . . . Memphis reaches back to literary mothers and towards potential daughters, honouring the strength, creativity and resilience of Black women * Irish Times * I fell in love with this book by the end of the second paragraph. This story truly touched my soul. A talented new author who is definitely one to watch * Prima, Book of the Month * Charting the story of three generations of women from a family in Memphis, this debut delivers an epic yet intimate history of black womanhood - ideal for fans of The Vanishing Half and An American Marriage * Cosmo * If ever there was a novel that reflects how the past can shape us, and how we can change our story, it's this stunning debut . . . this beautifully told and inspiring story is full of hope * Woman and Home * An accomplished debut * Good Housekeeping * This vivid debut novel examines the tragedies, joys, and deep connections of one extraordinary Memphis family . . . A powerful family saga from a promising writer * Booklist * This poetic, multigenerational story is set in the ancestral Memphis home a mother and her daughters flee to to escape the father's violence. Spanning 70 years, and told through a variety of voices, this powerful debut novel encompasses race, class, and the legacy of trauma * Oprah Daily Most Anticipated * This beautifully written debut will transport, challenge and transfix you . . . The novel is an ode to the city and the Black women living there. There's a great sense of the women's enigma and enchantment, humour and fortitude * Adele Parks, Platinum Magazine * An incredible read * Bella * Stunning . . . a spectacular debut rich with Southern charm . . . a celebration of sisterhood and life * Voice Magazine * I love this book. I couldn't put it down. You will fall in love with these women who gather strength from one another's care amidst a world of heartbreak, racism, and violence. Filled with Fifties music, this book went straight to my heart -- Al Woodworth, Amazon Editor, Amazon Best Books of April 2002 This book was stunning. The characters were vivid and alive, and the weaving between tales was thematic and effortless -- Avalon, Aberystwyth Waterstones bookseller A real celebration of Black women living in Memphis - deals with complex issues of race, class, love and loss in a beautiful way -- Helen, Waterstones Events I loved these larger than life, exuberant female characters -- Clare, Farnham Waterstones bookseller This book had me gripped from the start - incredibly moving! -- Emily, Newport Waterstones bookseller A superb book by an author who knows how to write brilliant characters -- Ben, Chichester Waterstones bookseller

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