“Sydney is different. She has “sightings” others call “visions”. Because she often knows a thing before it happens, those who are frightened call her “witch”. Those who cherish her call her “blessed.” A fully-formed, stunning woman with an unshakable sense of self, she is what she is, and if you don’t like it. . . she won’t miss you. Sydney cannot cry, and has no understanding of time. Beautiful, intelligent, unashamedly sexual, what she is most, is true to herself. It’s the only way she knows to be.
We meet her at eighteen, alone after her mother’s death as she painfully learns for the first time what “never” means. The birth of her son begins a journey with a variety of complex companions caught up in the relentless vortex of history, and inevitably — shaping it. This sometimes grimly realistic tale of political intrigue, superstition, prejudice and violence does not ignore love. Love is the current running through both the most threatening and peaceful of scenarios. In this intricate first novel, we are asked to believe both the ordinary and the absurd. Harsh and cruel realism is tempered by touches of the fantastic. It is best, when reading The President’s Mother, to resist any attempt to separate the two. Let the story roll over you, and decide at the end what you believe to be truth.” FROM THE AMAZON BLURB
The President’s Mother is a collection of mirrors of the characters presented. Each one is presented delightfully, each with a new perspective on the story, as we see Sydney become the mother of a President of the United States. If you put the mirrors in order in your reader’s mind, you’ll see the sequence of events and the climax of this outstanding and unique story.
Roberta Gray is a Washington hand, working for years in the Nation’s Capitol in advertising print production and graphics. She describes her home on the Eastern Shore of Maryland as follows:
Strident in winter, the river wind arrives bearing cold to dump on our dwellings,
moans around eaves, bangs shutters and shuffles chairs on screen porches.
We feed wood stoves to defend against it. In the heavy heat of summer
we throw open our doors and windows, welcoming its comforting embrace.
Yes, hers is the kind of descriptive poetry we all wish we could write. But then this author has also prevailed in short stories. Check out “Bound as One” in http://midwayjournal.com/bound-as-one/. You’ll enjoy the same mind play between interesting characters as you have enjoyed in the President’s Mother, a true tour de force.
Roberta has also followed her creative passion in art. We see an example of her accomplishment in the beauty of the cover of The President’s Mother. This art fandom has followed her into the world of writing and bodes equal success.