Audiobooks Godshot –

Drought Has Settled On The Town Of Peaches, California The Area Of The Central Valley Where Fourteen Year Old Lacey May And Her Alcoholic Mother Live Was Once An Agricultural Paradise Now It S An Environmental Disaster, A Place Of Cracked Earth And Barren Raisin Farms In Their Desperation, Residents Have Turned To A Cult Leader Named Pastor Vern For Guidance He Promises, Through Secret Assignments, To Bring The Rain Everybody Is Praying For Lacey Has No Reason To Doubt The Pastor But Then Her Life Explodes In A Single Unimaginable Act Of Abandonment Her Mother, Exiled From The Community For Her Sins, Leaves Lacey And Runs Off With A Man She Barely Knows Abandoned And Distraught, Lacey May Moves In With Her Widowed Grandma, Cherry, Who Is Concerned With Her Taxidermy Mice Collection Than Her Own Granddaughter As Lacey May Endures The Increasingly Appalling Acts Of Men Who Want To Write All The Rules, And Begins To Uncover The Full Extent Of Pastor Vern S Shocking Plan To Bring Fertility Back To The Land, She Decides She Must Go On A Quest To Find Her Mother, No Matter What It Takes With Her Only Guidance Coming From The Romance Novels She Reads And The Unlikely Companionship Of The Women Who Knew Her Mother, She Must Find Her Own Way Through Unthinkable CircumstancesPossessed Of An Unstoppable Plot And A Brilliantly Soulful Voice, Godshot Is A Book Of Grit And Humor And Heart, A Debut Novel About Female Friendship And Resilience, Mother Loss And Motherhood, And Seeking Salvation In Unexpected Places It Introduces A Writer Who Gives Flannery O Connor S Gothic Parables A Californian Twist And Who Emerges With A Miracle That Is All Her Own I am such a sucker for dystopian fiction It hurts Get used to it, she said Women have a long history of sufferingHow to describe this book well, it s a book about women and girls About mothers and daughters, and the often difficult relationships between them about what it is to love so deeply a mother who has failed you About religion and the way it can be used to control women s bodies It feels dystopian due to the claustrophobic, stifling feel of the novel, but it s not really.The White Oleander comparison is a good one I also think this might be the kind of thing Elana K Arnold would write if she turned her talents to adult fiction A gritty, ugly, yet oddly empowering tale about girls I m also surprised no one has thought to pull out the ol The Handmaid s Tale comparison The religious zealotry, the single narrow perspective, the control, the idolization of pregnancy and pregnant women I can see the parallels Though the main difference here is that they didn t have to overthrow an entire system and install a new government It was simply the use of fear that got people to believe a charlatan was a messiah The book is set in the fictional town of Peaches, California, which is experiencing a devastating drought The lush greenery of the past has been replaced by cracked earth, and the local residents, in their desperation, turn to Pastor Vern to guide them away from sin and towards a new world one where God rewards their faith with water To do this, they are given assignments, but they are warned not to speak of their assignments with one another I don t know why I loved her the way I did, in this aching way that could not be explained, other than she was my mother There was no reason beyond that. Lacey May s mother is everything to her her whole world So when she is exiled from the church, Lacey May cannot understand why she abandons her completely and runs away with a man What follows is Lacey May s search for her mother and her search for the truth about the community in which she lives When she is given her own assignment, the story takes a dark turn.It s a bildungsroman of sorts Lacey May is an extremely sympathetic character naive in a lot of ways but without being irritatingly so plus smart and resourceful in others Her mother is a very complex woman I spent the whole book stuck halfway between pity for her and anger at her selfishness This is intentional, I feel The author wants us to have the complicated relationship with her that Lacey May has For nothing could take away who my mother and I had been when we had loved each other, when we d driven the town, heads back screaming along to her favorite songs, the way she looked so melancholy and how she d rested her chin on my head while we slow danced in the living room to Tears in HeavenBeyond this, it is quite hard to explain all that the book does Godshot takes on so many themes relating to girlhood and growing up and religion One thing I love is when authors figure out how to tell old stories in this case, about a difficult mother daughter relationship in new, creative ways.Whether it is about love for a mother who doesn t deserve it, or love for a religion that is a lie, at its heart, it feels like this book is about how growing up and changing can mean opening your eyes and losing faith in the false gods you ve always believed in It s about looking back over everything that has happened to you and being able to reevaluate it through new eyes And, I guess, it s a bittersweet story about letting go.Facebook Instagram Whatever s happened to you can either make you beautiful, or it will ruin you forever You decide I mean, beautiful I mean, deep and changed Affected Wise When you see a woman like that, you know She s beautiful because of her undoing Beautiful because she rebirthed herself from ashes Chelsea Bieker s Godshot is a dynamite of a debut novel about the true grit of girlhood under the long arm of religion and patriarchy The story dawns in the drought stricken town of Peaches, California, a place where the sun has made a rusted wasteland of what was once verdant and bountiful it is no place to raise young girls This is the misfortune of 14 year old Lacey May, who, along with her alcoholic mother, decamps to Peaches at the advent of Pastor Vern a white man claiming to be Christ s reincarnate who turned infidels into believers after summoning rain from the sky Hellbent on driving out the evils of the decaying city by way of unthinkable practices from cola baptisms to god glitter sermons Vern allots the young men and women of his cult different assignments, one that banishes her mother into exile, another leaves Lacey May with a child of incest Cast into such motherlessness, our plucky heroine must discern the contradictions of the church on her own before another of Vern s prophecies come to pass Just when the light begins to pierce the darkness that has overtaken Peaches when she finds refuge among phone sex operators witches and other outcasts, life tasks Lacey with one last assignment to abandon the girl she was before to become the mother she needs to be.While feminism motifs are at the front of this story, I deeply respected Bieker s unflinching approach to using her heroine s journey to undermine the duplicitous complex of straight white men, all of whom are exposed as abusers of power i.e., cult leaders, pedophiles, rapists, etc , to inform an even larger concept on how much of a menace they really can be to a society And who better than Bieker to evoke such a terrifying yet touching take on the coming of age cult narrative The brooding darkness and feminist energy from which she draws to bring this nightmare to life made the story feel eerily dystopian, and I savored every page of it Bieker writes with a stroke of fever and ferocity I have yet to read in a debut in a long time, which is why Godshot will be one of the most flaming hot forays you ll read next year Thanks, Catapult, for sending me Bieker s debut novel in exchange for an honest review If you liked my review, feel free to follow me parisperusing on Instagram. This is a perfect novel From my blurb on the cover, which I mean with my full heart Chelsea Bieker s Godshot is an absolute masterpiece A truly epic journey through girlhood, divinity, and the blood that binds and divides us, it is a feminist magnum opus of this, or any, time Bieker is a pitch perfect ventriloquist of extraordinary talent and ferocity Imagine if Annie Proulx wrote something like White Oleander crossed with Geek Love or Cruddy, and then add cults, God, motherhood, girlhood, class, deserts, witches, the divinity of women Terrifying, resplendent, and profoundly moving, this book will leave you changed GET ON IT.