The Supremes at Earl's All You-Can-Eat by Edward Kelsey Moore is such a treat. First set in the 1960's in a town called Plainview, Indiana, the story spans the friendship over four decades of three high-school girlfriends who become known as the Supremes and their Sunday gatherings after church at Earl's All-You-Can Eat, a hub of community socialization, support, and gossip.
Large and fearless Odette, beautiful and wealthy Barbara Jean who has always loved someone of forbidden race, and Clarice who tries to use her traditional biblical faith to cope with her husband's blatant infidelity, are three unlikely friends who share each other's joy and grief as well as hilarious fun. In addition are the other town characters who lend more drama to the plot than a Dr. Phil show and sometimes more color than a three-ring circus.
The black community of Plainview is riding the first wave of the Civil Rights movement, but this is more a tale of community and family complexities than race. The insights into this glimpse of black culture are so vivid that that I felt that I was right there with them and so so engaging that I never wanted the book to end. The characters lend wit, wisdom, and good doses of helpful psychology as they are heard. If there is one meaningful message to be taken away from this novel, it is perhaps that there is no better therapy than the support of girlfriends, men friends, family, and community.
Already on bestseller lists and winning top reviews, this is a book that should not be missed. Edward Kelsey Moore is a talented writer and musician. Writing mostly short stories or for literary magazines, this is his first novel. To learn more visit his website here.