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The Unspoken Years

What happens to two children with a mentally ill mother? How do they save themselves? Set in the 1960s and 70s, The Unspoken Years is the tumultuous story of Ruth, whose single mother, Elizabeth, claims she is God’s bride and although she is Ruth’s and Roger’s birth mother, she remains a virgin. Unfortunately, this divinity didn’t make it into the children’s genetic makeup; they are quite fallible, and Elizabeth is quick to correct and “purify” them. Like many mentally ill people, Elizabeth can be as charming and engaging as she is abusive and destructive, switching without warning. A call from Ruth’s grandmother–whom she’s never met–sets mother and daughter on a cross-country journey, during which the fragile fabric of their small family begins to unravel.

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