This year Lifetime Learning of Brenham chose The Book of Lost Friends by Lisa Wingate. The reception at Unity Theatre is free to attend!
The Book of Lost Friends, set during Reconstruction, introduces the reader to Hannie Gossett, a formerly enslaved woman, as she searches for family brutally taken from her during slavery.
Wingate’s novel alternates chapters centering on Hannie in 1875 and the story of Bennie Silva in 1987, a new school teacher in Augustine, Louisiana, struggling to engage her bored, under performing students. When Bennie stumbles upon a slave cemetery on the edge of an old plantation manor house, she awakens her students’ imaginations to delve into the history, mystery, and lives buried there. Anticipating the merging of these two story lines, the reader remains captivated until Wingate finally reveals their connection.
Lisa Wingate was inspired by actual letters seeking news of lost loved ones published by the Southwestern Christian Advocate newspaper across the South. With her highly readable prose and evocative imagery, Wingate enlightens us about this little known, but historically important event.
As always, $1 from the sale of every non-discounted new copy of this book purchased at The Book Nook will be donated back to Lifetime Learning. You can support them by supporting your local bookstore! (pmc_)