Done Growed Up
When we last left the Mackey Family in the late 1950s, their lives were in turmoil. Divorce, alcoholism, racism, death, puberty - what WEREN'T they dealing with? Ethel, a black maid in a racist world - the true heart and soul of the Mackey Family, is the children's only constant as she fights her own numerous demons. Twelve-year-old Sallee struggles to understand the world with little enlightenment from the adults around her. Her older sister Stuart, a college student New York City, finally escaped the South and drama of her family only to succumb to the terrible temptations of urban life; Gordon, a 14 year old boy feeling anger and hatred as he begins to slowly realize the harsh reality of the people and world around him; while Ginny, newly divorced mother of four, finds that she's not the spoiled princess she once was. She is overwhelmed with responsibility, feelings of abandonment, and alcoholism. Joe, Ginny's ex, and the children's father, revels in new-found wealth and popularity with women, yet yearns for family and simpler times. Author Mary Morony was born and raised in Charlottesville, Virginia, mainly by her family's beloved black maid. Her childhood was a time of segregated schools and many places that prohibited black people. Morony's inspiration for the Apron Strings Trilogy was her strong relationship with her maid and caretaker, who taught her more about life and love than anyone has since. Morony also uses personal life tragedies and triumphs to produce novels with real experiences and true emotion.
About the Author
Mary Morony is an author who can write about tragedy from the inside and guides her readers through it to compassion, humor and recovery. She brings Southern charm, irreverence and wit to bear against subjects as vast as racism and as personal as alcoholism, always with a heart and soul that makes her work undeniably appealing. Her Apron Strings trilogy, a series of novels that draw on the life she knew growing up in Charlottesville, Virginia, at a time when Virginia was still very much a part of the Jim Crow South. But amid the chaos, the woman who was the family servant also became Morony's inspiration, teaching her love and acceptance with warmth, humor, and unending patience - and becoming the model, finally, for a central character in Apron Strings. She finds no shortage of material for her novels in the everyday lives around her. My mantra is: If it doesn't kill you, it will make a good story - and even if it does kill you, it will make a good story for someone! I can and have found things to laugh about in death, divorce, mental illness, and most of all, people's pettiness - including my own." She says, "I have lived a life chock full of stories, and I do mean chock full." She likes big projects, has a hard time reining herself in and seldom does things in a conventional time frame. This may account for her not having finished her B.A. - in English, with a concentration in creative writing, from the University of Virginia - until she was in her forties. by then with four children. The university gave her the opportunity to focus on the path that led to Apron Strings, a distillation of her experiences: a Southern childhood, in a world where everyone drank; where divorce was the "D" word and nice people didn't get one, even though her parents' marriage was in pieces; and where the one adult who could show her unconditional love couldn't sit with her in the movie theater or a restaurant. Here lies the saving grace of her writing: As her characters grow and learn, she is able to refract her own life's struggles, defeats and victories through them. A life that could have mired her in suffering has bred instead a writer full of wit, compassion, and the wisdom that comes from living and often laughing through it. Morony's characters and settings are captured with sensitivity and an eye for realistic detail, her plots skillfully crafted by one who has "been there."