04 March, 2015

Sing in the morning, cry at night by Barbara J. Taylor [Monica, Orewa Library]

Sing in the morning, cry at night is set in an anthracite mining community in America in 1913. The harsh realities of mining in freezing temperatures with no legal protection of minors at work or any other sort of health and safety regulations are brought home by the thorough research that the author has done. The overall tone of the book is tragic, and the relief offered by several of the characters is all the more hilarious for its contrast. This story is a well-spun web of despair, tragedy, hardship and hope, in a harsh setting where immigrants from Wales, Poland and Lithuania (amongst others) have arrived to what they believed would be a better life.

With their various languages and culture come different religions, and a large part of the story is given over to Christianity in all its forms. The true meaning of the word “Christian” is debated in a study of certain characters’ words and deeds leading up to the arrival of a famous evangelist who is to hold a revival in the town.

Title: Sing in the morning, cry at night 
Author: Barbara J. Taylor
Published: 2015
Publisher: Akashic Books
ISBN: 9781617752278

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