The Last Suppers Author:Mandy Mikulencak Set in 1950s Louisiana, Mandy Mikulencak?s beautifully written and emotionally moving novel evokes both The Help and Dead Man Walking with the story of an unforgettable woman whose quest to provide meals for death row prisoners leads her into the secrets of her own past. — Many children have grown up in the shadow of Louisiana?s Greenmount State ... more »Penitentiary. Most of them?sons and daughters of corrections officers and staff?left the place as soon as they could. Yet Ginny Polk chose to come back to work as a prison cook. She knows the harsh reality of life within those walls?the cries of men being beaten, the lines of shuffling inmates chained together. Yet she has never seen them as monsters, not even the ones sentenced to execution. That?s why, among her duties, Ginny has taken on a special responsibility: preparing their last meals.
Pot roast or red beans and rice, coconut cake with seven-minute frosting or pork neck stew . . . whatever the men ask for Ginny prepares, even meeting with their heartbroken relatives to get each recipe just right. It?s her way of honoring their humanity, showing some compassion in their final hours. The prison board frowns upon the ritual, as does Roscoe Simms, Greenmount?s Warden. Her daddy?s best friend before he was murdered, Roscoe has always watched out for Ginny, and their friendship has evolved into something deep and unexpected. But when Ginny stumbles upon information about the man executed for killing her father, it leads to a series of dark and painful revelations.
Truth, justice, mercy?none of these are as simple as Ginny once believed. And the most shocking crimes may not be the ones committed out of anger or greed, but the sacrifices we make for love.
Advance praise for The Last Suppers
?The Last Suppers held me riveted from the first page to the last, a gorgeous novel that finds beauty in the most unlikely of places. This story has the social conscience of The Help, the unflinching honesty of The Shawshank Redemption, and a wholly original heroine whose humanity will touch your heart as she cooks her way to redemption.? ?Susan Wiggs, # 1 New York Times bestselling author
?A taut page-turner . . . had me in its grips to the shocking end of a well-crafted, gripping story.? ?Anna Jean Mayhew, author of The Dry Grass of August
?Filled with heart and reverent solemnity, despair and hope, Mandy Mikulencak?s writing is a sensitive, thoughtful narrative about finding freedom beyond the boundaries of what we believe of ourselves and of our past. With captivating characters, a unique premise, and set in sultry Louisiana, this story is as rich and enticing as the last suppers prepared, one you will want to linger over until the very last page.? ?Donna Everhart, author of The Education of Dixie Dupree« less
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