Bluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke

(Book 125) As mentioned in last month’s summary, Linda was scheduled to host, but if we were to meet in person, we had to reassign the hosting duties to someone with an outdoor space. Chris graciously took it on and we enjoyed an unseasonably warm evening on her back deck. There were eight of us, socially distanced, with our own designated tongs for serving our food. Those not in attendance were Melissa, who was in Kansas, Geri, who was recently in contact with someone who was recently exposed (#!%&^*#) to COVID and Rosalie, who had a better offer!

As the book is set in Texas, Chris served up a Texas BBQ with brisket, pulled pork, two kinds of sauce, rolls, macaroni and cheese, cole slaw, heirloom tomatoes, and watermelon. I have always had an appetite as big as Texas, but my recent A1c score limited my participation, or at least tried to. The meal was delicious and the atmosphere on the deck was perfect. Chris was even so kind as to send some mac and cheese home with me for Denny, yeah, that’s right, it was for Denny.

Our talk about the book may have been the shortest discussion ever, not that the book wasn’t appreciated, but for many of us it had been way too long since any in-person contact. Karen commented that my ESP was working again, because the book is all about the racial tension that sparked everywhere across the country this summer. I read my favorite passage:
“His uncles adhered to those ancient rules of southern living, for they understood how easily a colored man’s general comportment could turn into a matter of life and death. Darren had always wanted to believe that theirs was the last generation to have to live that way, that change might trickle down from the White House. When in fact the opposite had proved to be true. In the wake of Obama, America had told on itself.”
Marcia said that it had been a compelling read; that the writing was very cinematic. I agreed and mentioned that the author has written for TV and Chris added that she was a writer and producer for Empire. Linda mentioned that it was frightening enough that she was unable to read it at night alone in her cabin in Michigan — and after that we were on to politics, mail-in ballots, early voting, a scary article in the Atlantic, new polling places, and a variety of things we’d never heard of until this year!

For dessert, Geri had purchased cupcakes to celebrate my birthday, but as I said, she wasn’t able to attend and she didn’t tell Chris what varieties they were. Luckily, I can spot carrot cake across the length of a football field, which made my choice an easy one. (I took just about all the delicious frosting off of it and carrots are a vegetable!) The girls gave me flowers, (cut and potted) gifts and cards and it’s really not fair that we don’t do everyone’s birthday, so I will work on that. I gave Linda her hostess gift and painting and I gave Chris the painting for October:

September’s calendar art: Rise
October calendar art: For the Birds

I will be hosting The Plague of Doves on October 20. We are keeping our fingers crossed for more warm weather and if not I’m lighting up the fire pits!