Who I'm Reading

Phyllis Alesia Perry was born in Atlanta Georgia and attended the University of Alabama.. She graduated with a degree in communication in 1982. Ms.Perry followed in her father’s footsteps by becoming a journalist with Atlanta Journal. Harman Griggs Perry was the first African American journalist to be hired at the Journal. Phyllis out did her father's achievements by becoming the assistant city editor. In 1988 Perry and a team of other journalist were awarded the prestigious Pulitzer Prize. She also won the Distinguished Service Award of the society of Professional Journalists as well as the Sigma Delta Chi for investigative reporting on Alabama’s infant mortality crisis. She has work as an editor, copy editor and reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The Book


In her first book Ms. Perry has introduced the world to her extraordinary talent. In her haunting account of  Stigmata, a young girl inherits a hand made quilt from her maternal grandmother that she has never met. The quilt  tells the story of her maternal family tree starting with her great-great-grandmother Ayo, who was stole from her mother in Africa and sent to American to become a slave. Its not long before Lizzie begins to learn what the figures sown into the guilt mean. She start to have vivid dreams and visions that take Lizzie back in time that seem to fuse her life with that of her maternal grandmothers, Grace and Ayo. One night , after another lucid dream, Lizzie wakes in horrible pain  to find the quilt soaked with her blood. The bloody rings around her wrist left by manacles and flay marks on her back are believe to have been self inflicted. Lizzie is soon sent to an institution to work out her problems, but Lizzie is not crazy. While she seems to be sinking deeper into her insanity Lizzie is linking to the past. Now after 14 years in mental institutions, Lizzie is finally getting out to face what she has to face. Lizzie must now craft her story into the quilt. 

I love this book having read it years ago I came back to it.  It was as compelling and utterly intriguing as any story I’ve read. It  haunted my dreams for a few days after I finished reading it, I’ll have to say. Ms. Perry craftsmanship held me from the start, from the moment Lizzie began talking about the institutions I was hooked. I loved Lizzie’s spirit. To know where you came from, who you came from and who you are is a true gift indeed. Ms. Perry waving of the characters from the past to the present connected by their spirits is a take on reincarnation that I had never imagined. But someone said that we are connect to someone in our past be it mother or brother, father or sister. Ms. Perry took me on a wonderful ride with her through time and space. I hope you will go out and get this book.

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