"We are all Welcome Here" created many mixed emotions for me. One minute I was thoroughly enjoying it, the next found it a bit gloomy. One thing is for sure, this novel would be great for a book club discussion. There are many topics to discuss based on the lives of the four main characters and there are several things I learned about being and caring for a person that is also handicapped. The ending was a bit "cheesy", however, I do believe that even if in some small way, this book will impact me.
SYNOPSIS by Barnes & Noble
RATING 3 1/2 STARS - I Liked It!
It is the summer of 1964. In Tupelo, Mississippi, the town of Elvis’s birth, tensions are mounting over civil-rights demonstrations occurring ever more frequently - and violently - across the state. But in Paige Dunn’s small, ramshackle house, there are more immediate concerns. Challenged by the effects of the polio she contracted during her last month of pregnancy, Paige is nonetheless determined to live as normal a life as possible and to raise her daughter, Diana, in the way she sees fit - with the support of her tough-talking black caregiver, Peacie.
Diana is trying in her own fashion to live a normal life. As a fourteen-year-old, she wants to make money for clothes and magazines, to slough off the authority of her mother and Peacie, to figure out the puzzle that is boys, and to escape the oppressiveness she sees everywhere in her small town. What she can never escape, however, is the way her life is markedly different from others’. Nor can she escape her ongoing responsibility to assist in caring for her mother. Paige Dunn is attractive, charming, intelligent, and lively, but her needs are great - and relentless.
As the summer unfolds, hate and adversity will visit this modest home. Despite the difficulties thrust upon them, each of the women will find her own path to independence, understanding, and peace. And Diana’s mother, so mightily compromised, will end up giving her daughter an extraordinary gift few parents could match.