In her new book, Sold on a Monday, due out August 28, 2018, Kristina McMorris delivers her readers right smack into the middle the Great Depression of the 1930s. In doing so, she shows us how one small decision can change not only our lives, but the lives of others in ways we never imagined.
Just as reporters’ articles triggered our child labor laws, and novels of the past triggered safety regulations for meat packers, coal miners, and others, the characters in this novel expose for their audience the desperation of many families.
Sold on a Monday examines the cruelty of some adoptive “parents”, the mental illness of those who buy or steal children to replace a deceased child, and the double standard of that era for unmarried women with children. Through Lily Palmer, who has exemplary writing skills, but is kept in a secretarial position, McMorris also takes a look at the discrimination of women in the workplace that continues to this day.
Ellis reed is a young, yet-to-be-recognized reporter in 1931 Philadelphia. While out in the countryside, he sees two barefoot little boys in patched overalls sitting on the porch of a dilapidated house, playing a game. Above them, nailed to the front door is a sign that reads, “2 Children for Sale”. He quickly snaps a photo of the scene.
A co-worker, Lily Palmer sees the photo in the developing room, and shows it to their boss. The story Ellis writes to accompany the photo launches his career in ways he couldn’t imagine. When young man spills ink on the photo and its negative, Ellis tries to take another, but the family is gone. Taking the sign from the trash, he stages the photo with different children, and inadvertently creates a series of events for those children and their mother that he must make right.
The reader is reminded in a touchingly poignant way of the desperation felt by all but the very wealthy during those years. I highly recommend this book. You won’t be sorry you took the time to read it.
What Makes This Book Reviewer Grumpy?
The usual things:
- confusing bring with take;
- multiple split infinitives;
- beginning sentences with conjunctions.