When Patsy gets her long-coveted visa to America, it comes after years of yearning to leave Pennyfield, the beautiful but impoverished Jamaican town where she was raised. More than anything, Patsy wishes to be reunited wit ...more
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Given the premise, Patsy should have been more emotionally resonant. Nicole Dennis-Benn wrote about the experience of a Jamaican immigrant (Patsy) in America after she leaves her young daughter (Tru) behind in Jamaica. The relationship between the two isn't established strongly, so I didn't feel the sadness Dennis-Benn wanted me to feel. The main character's struggle to understand and accept her sexual identity feels similarly distant.
Also disappointing is the shallow depiction ...more
We meet Patsy, a twenty something Jamaican living in Pennyfield- what one would call a ghetto. Patsy is a government worker, but gets paid so little, she ends up doing some on the side work that is she not too proud about. Patsy is the sole breadwinner, but she is hardly able to provide for her daughter Tru and her mother who stopped working after fin ...more
Dennis-Benn’s writing is mesmerizing and colorful. As the reader is transported back and forth from Brooklyn to Jamaica, the different emotions and moods the places evoke are palpable.
Patsy’s hometown in Jamaica is poor - if she stays there, she knows the exact path her life will take. Motivated by love and the desire ...more
I also liked t ...more
The mother-daughter duo at the center of the story are so well realized and so beautifully gende ...more
Thanks to the publisher for access to the advance copy.
Writing a glowing review about this novel is not hard because this book TRULY is impeccable.
We first meet Patsy when she is trying to procure a visa to get to the United States. She has no intentions of taking her daughter nor returning when she is granted a visa. She leaves in hopes to rekindle a stro ...more
There's an excellent review in the NY times https://www.nytime ...more
Dreams shattered, Patsy tries to navigate life on her own as an undocumented woman in a country where she knows no one. It wears on her physically and mentally.
Meanwhile back in Jamaica, Patsy’s daughter ...more
Patsy is an immersive story of heartache, longing, doubt and acceptance. A story about motherhood and immigration, expectations and reality. Patsy leaves behind her young daughter, Tru when she is able to secure a tourist visa to America. But unbeknownst to Tru, Patsy has no plans to return. Patsy believes all her dreams and ...more
This book was definitely different than I was expecting--I was expecting way more romance, so the first half of the book was a little difficult for me to get through until I re-calibrated my expectations from the book. (This is probably my fault for not reading the summary closely enough.)
Once I got into the story, I found myself caring deeply about the characters and feeling totally invested in their story. Patsy brought me into a world that I real ...more
Patsy and Tru, are the mother and daughter in alternate chapters of this heartbreaking story of chasing a dream of love and freedom from Jamaica to Brooklyn. Patsy's childhood was rough, and she decided at a young age that she would get a visa to go to New York to be with her best friend, Cicely. After several attempts, Patsy wins her coveted prize and plans for her trip. Patsy's determination overrides her guilt of leaving her daughter, T ...more
The lyrical narrative touches upon issues of race, wealth, societal expectations, sexual norms, and more. It is a heartbreaking tale of the undocumented immigrant experience told in bold, unrelenting strokes, and it is truly not to be missed.
This ARC was pr ...more
Another beautifully written story with an important message throughout by Nicole Dennis-Benn. Patsy was a slow, often sad, powerful rumination about motherhood, sacrifice, self-love and identity that crept up on me slowly but then swept me away all at once.
Nicole is an incredibly gifted author and I am grateful for the existence of this book, and particularly for the existence of its main characters, Patsy and her daughter Tru. In this novel, Nicole deftly handles difficult topics in ...more
Patsy's character is flawed, yes, and I'd understand disagreeing with her actions on the surface, but as we get to know her better, we start to understand her choices from her perspective in light of her up ...more
I have to say that everything I read from Nicole Dennis-Benn always turns into something that I just CANNOT put down. She writes so incredibly beautifully. This isn't a mystery but it's still a page turner.
I think what I appreciate most about the books that she writes is the ambiguity between right and wrong. Nothing is every black and white and character motivations are always based on a need for surviving in a pretty cruel ...more
HERE COMES THE SUN was named a New ...more