The Sweetest Hallelujah
by Elaine Hussey
Paperback- $12.76

An unforgettable story of two courageous women brought together by one extraordinary little girl  

Betty Jewel Hughes was once the hottest ...

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  "The Sweetest Hallelujah by Elaine Hussey" by [email protected] (see profile) 07/10/13

Betty Jewel, dying of cancer, is looking for someone to care for her 10 year old daughter, Billie. Someone who is NOT the child’s father. Shakerag, Mississippi, in the middle 1950’s, is a hotbed of racial unrest. When a white journalist hears Betty Jewel’s story and appears to want to raise the black child, both women are in danger.
This is a wonderful story with plenty of twists and turns to keep the plot moving along. The characters are real, speak truly and in character and are people you want to know. This story will live with you long after you finish the book. Friends are a vital part of the tale for both women, both those who stand by them and their decisions and those who vehemently voice their opposition.
Book groups will find this a great book to spark a discussion of racism, friendship, marriage, trust, adoption, journalism, community, illness and hope. A minor theme is music and its ability to heal and support both the music makers and the hearers.

  "The Sweetest Hallelujah" by Silversolara (see profile) 10/21/13

They lived on opposite sides of the tracks, Betty Jewel apparently on the wrong side and Cassie on the right side. Betty Jewel had a secret that she kept for ten years. A secret unknown to Cassie and that secret being their ultimate connection.

Betty Jewel was the mother of Billie and was dying of cancer. Cassie was a reporter who found herself a widow and someone who became a part of Betty Jewel, Mama/Miss Queen, and Billie's life. Billie was a precocious child and the center of the connection between Cassie and Billie's family.

When Billie accidentally found out her mother was dying from cancer because of her constant eavesdropping, she was determined to find her father so he could make her mother well. Billie took a trip to Memphis alone to find her daddy. This trip is what brought the secret out and what made Cassie want to help even more. She wanted to be a friend to Mary Jewel even though it wasn't proper for a white person to be friends with anyone in the black community.

THE SWEETEST HALLELUJAH had the "sweetest" characters. Mama/Miss Queen was strict, but the sweetest ever. She was portrayed so well, you could vividly see her as well as see through her. You will feel right at home with Mama/Miss Queen. She had loving arms for you no matter what. The description of her pies and their aroma will have your mouth watering, but everything about her sent out warmth and love.

THE SWEETEST HALLELUJAH is set in the deep south when the Jim Crow Laws were still a major part of everyone's life. THE SWEETEST HALLELUJAH is heartwarming as well as heartbreaking.

The author perfectly portrays this time in history along with the characters' feelings and fears. Every character was flawlessly portrayed from their expressions down to their clothing. The descriptions of the landscape, the houses, and even the weather was amazing.

THE SWEETEST HALLELUJAH is a story about friendship that breaks all boundaries and a story that you will not easily forget.

I truly enjoyed this book because of the bond between the women and the way the author carried it out so well. You will be right there with the characters sharing their laughter and their pain. Be sure to have some tissues on hand. 5/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

  "If you liked the Help, you will like this." by colleenberg1 (see profile) 01/21/14

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