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   Stages of a Woman

Stages of a Woman
by J.J. Caldwell

Category: Fiction / Literary
108 pages; ISBN: 1592869971

Rating: 10/10  (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Christine Louise Hohlbaum


J.J. Caldwell’s Stages of a Woman is one of the best collection of short stories I have read in a very long time. Her stories touch the heart, the soul, and the mind. I found myself laughing along with Richelle’s inner dialogue about her relationship with her boyfriend (will he marry me? won’t he?) and crying at Momma Jowell’s funeral as if she were my own Momma.

Her uncanny ability to move the reader’s emotions deserves world wide attention. Difficult issues such as child abuse in “There Was a Hole in My Bucket” or abortion in “Do You Know What I Did?” are handled with such grace, such beauty. Caldwell makes the reader privvy to the inner thoughts of her characters. The text flows as if the figures are speaking directly to the reader without interference from an overbearing author’s voice.

As I read Caldwell’s book, I was immediately reminded of Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye and Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Move over, ladies. J.J. Caldwell has arrived!

Christine Louise Hohlbaum, author of Diary of a Mother: Parenting Stories and Other Stuff,


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