Moonrise Over New Jessup

Written by:
Jamila Minnicks
Narrated by:
Karen Chilton

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
January 2023
10 hours 47 minutes
Winner of the 2021 PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction, a thought-provoking and enchanting debut about a Black woman doing whatever it takes to protect all she loves at the beginning of the civil rights movement in Alabama.
It’s 1957, and after leaving the only home she has ever known, Alice Young steps off the bus into the all-Black town of New Jessup, Alabama, where residents have largely rejected integration as the means for Black social advancement. Instead, they seek to maintain, and fortify, the community they cherish on their “side of the woods.” In this place, Alice falls in love with Raymond Campbell, whose clandestine organizing activities challenge New Jessup’s longstanding status quo and could lead to the young couple’s expulsion—or worse—from the home they both hold dear. But as Raymond continues to push alternatives for enhancing New Jessup’s political power, Alice must find a way to balance her undying support for his underground work with her desire to protect New Jessup from the rising pressure of upheaval from inside, and outside, their side of town.

Jamila Minnicks’s debut novel is both a celebration of Black joy and a timely examination of the opposing viewpoints that attended desegregation in America. Readers of Brit Bennett’s The Vanishing Half and Robert Jones, Jr.’s The Prophets will love Moonrise Over New Jessup.

"With compelling characters and a heart-pounding plot, Jamila Minnicks pulled me into pages of history I’d never turned before."  —Barbara Kingsolver 

"An immersive and timely recasting of history by a gloriously talented writer to watch. You will fall in love with New Jessup: the town and the book." 
—Margaret Wilkerson Sexton, author of The Revisioners
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Latoya L.

Alice wants what most wants, a better life. Even though this story took place in 1957, a lot of things still remain true today. Alice left the only home she knew and moved to the all-Black town of New Jessup, Alabama. In this town, they have rejected integration as a means for Black social advancement, at least for their side of the woods. They are doing great, but as history has shown time and time again, once Black people are thriving and flourishing without white people, it must be destroyed and stopped. While in New Jessup, she falls in love with Raymond, who is a part of the NAAS(something like the NAACP) that pushes for alternatives for enhancing New Jessup’s political power. They both had to distinguish between their friends and those who thought had their best intentions. This book highlighted Black joy, opposing viewpoints in desegregation, love, lies, betrayals, and much more. #Book6of2024 #Bookworm #Whatsnext

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