From the critically-acclaimed author of Under a Painted Sky and Outrun the Moon and founding member of We Need Diverse Books comes a powerful novel about identity, betrayal, and the meaning of family.
By day, seventeen-year-old Jo Kuan works as a lady's maid for the cruel daughter of one of the wealthiest men in Atlanta. But by night, Jo moonlights as the pseudonymous author of a newspaper advice column for the genteel Southern lady, "Dear Miss Sweetie." When her column becomes wildly popular, she uses the power of the pen to address some of society's ills, but she's not prepared for the backlash that follows when her column challenges fixed ideas about race and gender. While her opponents clamor to uncover the secret identity of Miss Sweetie, a mysterious letter sets Jo off on a search for her own past and the parents who abandoned her as a baby. But when her efforts put her in the crosshairs of Atlanta's most notorious criminal, Jo must decide whether she, a girl used to living in the shadows, is ready to step into the light. With prose that is witty, insightful, and at times heartbreaking, Stacey Lee masterfully crafts an extraordinary social drama set in the New South.
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"Emily Woo Zeller's dynamic narration and Southern accent pair well with the author's elegant writing style. Jo Kuan, a 17-year-old Chinese-American, lives two lives. She is the lady's maid of the daughter of one of the wealthiest men in Atlanta. She is also the pseudonymous voice behind the wildly popular and controversial newspaper advice columnist "Miss Sweetie." Zeller masterfully employs varied tone, pace, pitch, and accent strength to convey the men and women of late-nineteenth-century Atlanta. The first-person narrator's Southern accent is stronger than Jo's spoken accent in dialogue, a noticeable juxtaposition that, while helping with the setting, can be a bit confusing. But Zeller's intense energy during moments of tension is wonderfully immersive, making this audiobook hard to pause. A.K.R. © AudioFile 2019, Portland, Maine"
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