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The Desert Sky Before Us ~ Anne Valente

May 17, 2019

Paperback: 448 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (May 14, 2019)

Oh, what a perfect start to the summer! I often get wrapped up in my science fiction and young adult stories and forget how heartbreakingly beautiful adult literary fiction can be.

The Desert Sky Before us is exactly the beauty I was looking for, in this moment, telling the story of two adult sisters who have lost their way, both with each other and the world.

The book begins with Billie’s release from prison, reuniting with her sister Rhiannon after months apart. Their reunion is fraught with pain, past history, and dark secrets, neither is willing to let go of.

It is also shortly after their mother’s passing, something that cuts deeper than anything that seeks to tear them apart.

Their mother, deceased as she may be, is hardly gone, and the sisters are soon charged with embarking on one last gift from the only person who could ever bring them together. She left behind a post-funeral scavenger hunt for her daughters, leading to their mother’s beloved paleontology dog site in Utah.

Though the women know the location at the end of the trail, they don’t anticipate the journey itself bringing them to their knees emotionally, as most well written road trips do.

The story has a depth and introspection that is often missing from women’s (or any) fiction and this was both a breath of fresh air and a much needed, heavier book to ground me in a somber place. It’s a little heavier than the average summer read but I highly recommend it, not exclusively to but especially if you are one of a set of sisters.

It’s a marvelous journey and one you definitely need to take.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Photograph by Josh Finnell

About Anne Valente

Anne Valente’s first short-story collection, By Light We Knew Our Names, won the Dzanc Books Short Story Prize. Her fiction appears in One Story, The Kenyon Review, The Southern Review, and the Chicago Tribune, and her essays appear in The Believerand the Washington Post. Originally from St. Louis, she teaches creative writing and literature at Hamilton College.

Find out more about Anne at her website.

And as always, don’t just take my word for it. Check out these other TLC Book Tour stops!

Review Stops

Thursday, May 16th: Instagram: @jennsbookvibes

Friday, May 17th: Iwriteinbooks’s blog

Tuesday, May 21st: Tina Says…

Wednesday, May 22nd: Instagram: @happiestwhenreading

Thursday, May 23rd: Jathan & Heather

Friday, May 24th: BookNAround

Sunday, May 26th: Books and Bindings

Monday, May 27th: Instagram: @beritaudiokilledthebookmark

Tuesday, May 28th: Instagram: @lindsays_books

Wednesday, May 29th: Literary Quicksand

Thursday, May 30th: The Desert Bibliophile

Date TBD: Lesa’s Book Critiques

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