“WOW. What an incredible writer. Minrose Gwin uses words the way an artist uses paint, adding layers upon layers as she tells the story of young Florence Irene Forrest. Her family returns home to a small, segregated Alabama town in the 1960s, her father is holding secrets, her mother bakes cakes and is barely holding on, and she is a little girl holding on to her dream of a happy ending for her story. Florence spends her time listening, watching and waiting to be ready for whatever is headed her way. Her attention to the details in the people around her and the way she perceives herself as seen by others, leads to one heart wrenching phrase, I”
— Nona Camuel, CoffeeTree Books, Morehead, KY
“The most powerful and also the most lyrical novel about race, racism, and denial in the American South since To Kill a Mockingbird.”
— Lee Smith, author of On Agate Hill
“Exquisitely beautiful… The novel grips the reader from its first page and relentlessly drives us to its conclusion.”
— William Ferris, author of Give My Poor Heart Ease: Voices of the Mississippi Blues
An atmospheric debut novel about growing up in the changing South in 1960s Mississippi in the tradition of Sue Monk Kidd’s The Secret Life of Bees and Kathryn Stockett’s The Help. In the words of Jill McCorkle (Going Away Shoes), “Minrose Gwin is an extremely gifted writer and The Queen of Palmyra is a brilliant and compelling novel.”
Minrose Gwin is the author of The Queen of Palmyra, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers pick and finalist for the John Gardner Fiction Book Award, and the memoir Wishing for Snow, cited by Booklist as “eloquent” and “lyrical”—“a real life story we all need to know.” She has written four scholarly books and coedited The Literature of the American South. She grew up in Tupelo, Mississippi, hearing stories of the Tupelo tornado of 1936. She lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and Albuquerque, New Mexico.