The hilarious chronicle of the McAlister clan, a collection of bickering southern eccentrics whose family history is a parade of missteps, mishaps, and certifiable insanity
In the later years of her life, widow and grandmother Pearl decides to return to East Texas and move in with her sister, Wanda Gay—despite the fact that the two have never agreed on anything. (It is no wonder that brother Frank preferred the relative quiet of a prison cell.) A particular bone of contention seems to be the perceived saintliness or demonic nature of their late mother, Eugenia Fane. An unbending, overbearing, man-hating matriarch who not-so-stoically endured her own mother, Eugenia set a standard that the McAlister women would find nearly impossible—and quite mad—to try to live up to. Through the disputed remembrances, distortions, and wound saltings of Wanda Gay and Pearl, the twisted personal history of the McAlister dynasty comes to light, revealing what it is exactly that makes a family endure in spite of itself.
Like Faulkner in a funhouse, in Mother of Pearl, acclaimed author Edward Swift (Splendora) gives readers an extraordinary Southern gothic tale filled with unbridled dark humor, outrageous incidents, and wildly unforgettable characters.