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Almost Family, Almost Family, 0817310312, 0-8173-1031-2, 978-0-8173-1031-8, 9780817310318,

Almost Family
Roy Hoffman

Quality Paper
2000. 256 pp.
978-0-8173-1031-8
Price:  $19.95 t

The complex friendship between a black housekeeper and her Jewish employer is at the heart of Hoffman’s prize-winning novel about life in the civil rights era South

Nebraska Waters is black. Vivian Gold is Jewish. In an Alabama kitchen where, for nearly thirty years, they share cups of coffee, fret over their children, and watch the civil rights movement unfold out their window, and into their homes, they are like family—almost.

As Nebraska makes her way, day in and out, to Vivian’s house to cook and help tend the Gold children, the “almost” threatens to widen into a great divide. The two women’s husbands affect their relationship, as do their children, Viv Waters and Benjamin Gold, born the same year and coming of age in a changing South. The bond between the women both strengthens and frays.

Winner of the Lillian Smith Book Award and Alabama Library Association Award for fiction, Roy Hoffman’s Almost Family explores the relationship that begins when one person goes to work for another, and their friendship—across lines of race, income, and religion—develops degrees of understanding yet growing misunderstanding.
Roy Hoffman is author of the novels Almost Family, winner of the Lillian Smith Award for fiction, and Chicken Dreaming Corn, a BookSense pick endorsed by Harper Lee. He is author of two essay collections, Back Home: Journeys Through Mobile and Alabama Afternoons: Profiles and Conversations, and his articles and reviews have appeared in the New York Times, Fortune, Southern Living, and the Mobile Press-Register, where he was a long-time staff writer. A graduate of Tulane University who worked as a journalist and speechwriter in New York City before moving back south to Fairhope, Ala., he received the Clarence Cason Award in nonfiction from the University of Alabama and is on the faculty of the Spalding Brief Residency MFA in Writing Program. On the web: www.Facebook.com/RoyHoffmanWriter
 

“Hoffman never lets facts flatten characters; he has made them too human--too strong or too stubborn—for that.”
—New Yorker

“Everything in this book rings true--the dialogue, the cadences, the deft-touch observations, the best and worst of human nature.”
Atlanta Journal-Constitution

1983 Alabama Library Author Award, sponsored by Alabama Library Association
1983 Lillian Smith Book Award, sponsored by Southern Regional Council

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